It is amazing how many students get questions like these wrong!

Have you ever seen questions like:

*What fraction of 5 km is 8000 m?*

Or have you seen questions like:

*What percentage of 2 litres is 3000 ml?*

For the first question, the variety of answers range the gamut. Some students will give their answers as 5/8 or even 5/8000 which is wrong. Just because 8000 is larger than 5000, that doesn’t make it the denominator.

The correct way to do it is this:

1) Convert 5 km to 5000 m. Your child or student has to know how to do this first.

2) Then, let’s re-read the question.

*What fraction of 5 km is 8000 m?*

3) Let’s re-write the question.

Since we know that 5 km is 5000 m, the question can now be written as :

*What fraction of 5000 m is 8000 m?*

Now, focus on what has been underlined.

* “of 5000 m”* means take 5000 m to be your reference point. So, 5000 m must be your denominator.

Therefore, the fraction must be: 8000/5000

= 8/5

= 1 3/5 (1 and 3-fifth)

With regards to the 2^{nd} question, you can do the same:

*What percentage of 2 litres is 3000 ml?*

1) Convert 2 litres to 2000 ml.

2) Now, the question reads as:

*What percentage of 2000 ml is 3000 ml?*

2000 ml must be the denominator.

3000/2000 x 100% = 150%

So there you ago! **Simple mistakes that can and must be avoided.**

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