Step 1

Can you add yet? Nope! The denominators don"t match. We need a common denominator. So next we take both denominators and multiply them. Next, take each numerator and multiply it by the denominator of the other term.

You are watching: 1/2 plus 1/3

So, we multiply 1 by 3, and get 3, then we multiply 2 by 3 and get 6.

*

Now for the second term. You multiply 1 by 2, and get 2, then multiply 2 by 3 and get 6.

*

We now have a new problem, that looks like this:

3
6
+2
6

Step 2

Since our denominators match, we can add the numerators.

3 + 2 = 5

That gives us the sum, which is

5
6

Step 3

Now, do we need to simplify this fraction?

First, we attempt to divide it by 2...

Nope. Try the next prime number, 3...

Nope. Try the next prime number, 5...

Nope. Try the next prime number, 7...

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No good. 7 is larger than 5. So we"re done reducing.

Congratulations! Here"s your final answer to 1/2 + 1/31
2
+1
3
=5
6

© 2014 Randy Tayler
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