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Adding and subtracting fractions worksheet

Fractions: addition and subtraction worksheet
Can you add and subtract fractions? See if you can work out the answers to these calculations in this teacher-created maths worksheet...
Keystage:  KS2, Year 6, 11 Plus

How do you add and subtract fractions?

Adding and subtracting fractions in primary school typically involves several steps:

  • Make the bottom numbers the same (denominators): you need to have the same kind of pieces to add or subtract them. Think of it like having different kinds of Lego blocks - you can't stack them up if they're different shapes!
  • Find a common bottom number (denominator): if the bottom numbers (denominators) aren't the same, you need to find a number that both of them can turn into easily.
  • Make the top numbers match (numerators): once you have the same kind of pieces (denominators), you need to make sure you have the same number of them. Imagine you have two piles of sweets, but one has more pieces than the other. You need to make them fair by adding or taking away some from each pile.
  • Add or subtract the top numbers (numerators): now that you have the same kind and number of pieces, you can just add or subtract the numbers on the top (numerators). It's like counting all the sweets you have after making the piles equal.
  • Make it simpler if you can: sometimes, the answer can be simplified to make it easier to understand. 

What are some examples of adding and subtracting fractions?

Here is an example of adding fractions:

Addition: 1/3 ​+ 2/3​

Since the denominators are the same, you can directly add the numerators: 1 + 2 ​= 3/3​

Here is an example of subtracting fractions:

Subtraction: 5/6 ​− 1/6

Again, since the denominators are the same, you can directly subtract the numerators: 5 − 1 ​= 4​/6

Then you simplify the resulting fraction: 4/6​ = 2/3​ 

How will this worksheet help my child add and subtract fractions?

This maths worksheet provides your child with a comprehensive explanation of how to add and subtract fractions with different denominators and mixed numbers. They will then need to use what they've learned to answer the questions and check their answers (provided at the bottom).