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Lesson 1: Decimal fractions

# Understand decimals: FAQ

## What's the difference between a fraction and a decimal?

A fraction is a way of expressing a part of a whole, using two numbers separated by a slash. For example, start fraction, 1, divided by, 2, end fraction means "one half." A decimal is another way of expressing a part of a whole, using a decimal point. For example, 0, point, 5 also means "one half."
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## Why are grids and number lines helpful for understanding decimals and fractions?

Grids and number lines can help us visualize decimals and fractions, which can make them easier to understand. By seeing how they're laid out, we can better compare them and see how they relate to one another.
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## How do we write fractions as a decimals and decimals as fractions?

To write a fraction as a decimal, divide the top number (the numerator) by the bottom number (the denominator). For example, start fraction, 3, divided by, 4, end fraction can be written as 0, point, 75.
To write a decimal as a fraction, count the number of places after the decimal point. Write the decimal as the numerator, and put a 1 as the denominator, followed by as many zeroes as there are places after the decimal point. For example, 0, point, 37 can be written as start fraction, 37, divided by, 100, end fraction.
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## How do I compare two decimals?

To compare two decimals, we can look at the whole numbers before the decimal point. If one of these is larger, we know that number is larger overall. If the whole numbers are the same, we can compare the decimal digits, starting on the left. In cases where one decimal has more digits than the other, you can add zeroes to the end of the shorter decimal to make the comparison easier.
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## Where do we use decimals and fractions in the real world?

Decimals and fractions are used all over the place! For example, they're used in cooking and baking (i.e. start fraction, 1, divided by, 2, end fraction teaspoon), in sports (i.e. shooting 75, percent from the free throw line), and in finance (i.e. a 2, point, 5, percent interest rate).