Learn How to Subtract Fractions

Fractions! Your favorite numbers to work with, right?

Yes, I know the answer to that is "WRONG!" Most everyone hates working with fractions and along with many other people, you are here to learn how to subtract fractions.

In this lesson we will focus on subtracting fractions with like (or common) denominators. These are the easiest types of fractions to subtract because the denominators are the same.

In lessons that follow this one, we will also discover how to subtract fractions with unlike denominators and how to regroup when working with fractions.

Subtracting fractions with like denominators is very similar to adding fractions with like denominators. As long as the denominators are the same, we will subtract the numerators.

Let's take a look....

Example 1- Subtracting Fractions with Common Denomintors

Subtracting Fractions with Common Denominators

Not so bad, right? Yes, it is pretty easy when the denominators are already set equal to each other.

I would like to show you another example that is set up vertically. Same method is used, it just looks a little different.

Example 2 - Vertical Method of Subtracting

Vertical method of subtracting fractions with common denominators

Here's a simple rule to follow when subtracting fractions with common denominators.

Subtracting Fractions with Common Denominators

To subtract fractions with a common denominator, write the difference of the numerators over the denominator.

You may be wondering if this same process works with improper fractions.

YES! As long as the denominators are the same, it does not matter if the fractions are proper fractions or improper fractions.

Remember that improper fractions are fractions with a numerator that is larger than the denominator. These fractions represent numbers that are greater than 1.

Take a look at the next example.

Example 2 - Subtracting Improper Fractions

Subtracting improper fractions with common denominators

Hopefully you've found that subtracting fractions isn't so bad! If your denominators are the same, the process is very easy - simply subtract the numerators!

Now you are ready to tackle subtracting fractions with different denominators!

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