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Introduction and Summary

Like decimals, fractions appear a lot in everyday
life. This chapter will help you understand how to talk about them, how to
perform computations with them, how to express them as decimals, and how to
distinguish different types of fractions.

The first section will cover the
terminology used to talk about fractions--(numerator and
denominator) as well as the different types of fractions (proper
fractions), (improper fractions), and (mixed numbers). This
terminology must be mastered in order for one to do problems involving fractions
and understand future references to fractions.

The second section will first talk about
how to reduce fractions to lowest terms--a process that makes fractions
easier to recognize and work with. Next, the section will explain how to find
the least common denominator, which is the first step toward adding or
subtracting two fractions.

The third section will detail how to add
and subtract fractions. The fourth section
will detail how to multiply and divide fractions.

Sometimes it is necessary to switch between talking about decimals and talking
about fractions. The fifth section
will explain how to express decimals as fractions and how to express fractions
as decimals. Here, we will also learn the difference between fractions that
become terminating decimals and fractions that become repeating
decimals.