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Here you will learn about dividing decimals, including how to divide decimals by a whole number, divide decimals by decimals, and divide whole numbers by a decimals. You will learn how to use decimal division to solve word problems.
Students will first learn about dividing decimals as part of their work in number and operations in base ten in fifth grade.
Dividing decimals is when the divisor, dividend and quotient can be a decimal number. Let’s look at strategies for dividing decimals.
Dividing decimal by whole number

Modeling with a Hundredths Grid 
1.1 = 1.10 Divide into 2 equal groups. 55 squares in each group so the quotient is \textbf{0.55.} 
Using the Algorithm 
● Make sure the divisor is a whole number. 
Dividing decimal by a decimal

Modeling with a Hundredths Grid 
How many groups of 0.2 are there in 1.1? You can see there are 5.5 groups so the quotient is \textbf{5.5.} * \cfrac{1}{2} = 0.5

Using the Algorithm 
● Check the divisor, if it’s a whole number start dividing. 
Dividing a whole number by a decimal

How many groups of 0.2 \; (0.20) are there in 11? You can see there are 55 groups so the quotient is \textbf{55.} 
Using the Algorithm 
● Check the divisor, if it’s a whole number start dividing. 
How does this relate to 5th grade math and 6th grade math?
In order to divide decimals using the algorithm:
In order to solve real world problems using decimal division:
Use this quiz to check your grade 4 to 6 students’ understanding of decimals. 10+ questions with answers covering a range of 4th, 5th and 6th grade topics to identify areas of strength and support!
DOWNLOAD FREEUse this quiz to check your grade 4 to 6 students’ understanding of decimals. 10+ questions with answers covering a range of 4th, 5th and 6th grade topics to identify areas of strength and support!
DOWNLOAD FREESolve the decimal division problem.
0.16 \div 4 = \; ?The divisor is 4 which is a whole number.
3If the dividend is a decimal number, line up the decimal point of the dividend with the decimal point of the quotient. You may need to include zeros as place holders.
4Do long division.
The answer makes sense because on the hundredths grid it shows the quotient to be 0.04. The 4 equal groups have 4 squares. 4 squares = \; 0.04
Solve the decimal division problem.
32.85 \div 0.9 = \; ?If the divisor is a whole number, go to step 3. If not, decide the power of ten that will make the divisor a whole number.
The divisor is 0.9, which is not a whole number.
Multiply both the divisor and the dividend by the same power of \bf{10} .
Multiply 0.9 \times 10 which is the same as 0.9 \times 10^1
Multiply 32.85 \times 10 which is the same as 32.85 \times 10^1
0.9 \times 10 = 9
32.85 \times 10 = 328.5
If the dividend is a decimal number, line up the decimal point and place it on decimal. You may need to add zeros as place holders.
Do long division.
Solve the decimal division problem.
77 \div 0.35 = \; ?If the divisor is a whole number, go to step 3. If not, decide the power of ten that will make the divisor a whole number.
The divisor is 0.35, which is not a whole number.
Multiply both the divisor and the dividend by the same power of \bf{10} .
Multiply 0.35 \times 100 which is the same as 0.35 \times 10^2
Multiply 77 \times 10 which is the same as 77 \times 10^2
0.35 \times 100 = 35
77 \times 100 = 7700
If the dividend is a decimal number, line up the decimal point and place it on decimal. You may need to add zeros as place holders.
Do long division.
Carly has 26 meters of rope that she wants to cut into equal pieces that are 0.4 meters in length. How many pieces can she cut?
Read the problem, identify keywords, and decide which number is the dividend and which number is the divisor.
Keywords: equal pieces
26 meters is being cut into equal pieces of 0.4 meters each so the divisor is 0.4 and the dividend is 26.
If the divisor is a whole number, go to step 4. If not, decide the power of ten that will make the divisor a whole number.
The divisor is 0.4, which is not a whole number. Multiply it by 10 to make it a whole number.
Multiply both the divisor and the dividend by the same power of \bf{10} .
Multiply 0.4 \times 10 which is the same as 0.4 \times 10^1
Multiply 26 \times 10 which is the same as 26 \times 10^1
0.4 \times 10 = 4
26 \times 10 = 260
If the dividend is a decimal number, line up the decimal point of the dividend with the decimal point of the quotient. You may need to include zeros as place holders.
Do long division.
Label your answer appropriately.
The quotient is 65 which represents the pieces of rope.
Carly can cut 65 pieces of rope.
Julia and her sister are making holiday cookies. They have 0.384 ounces of red food coloring that they want to divide equally into 4 bowls of cookie dough. How much food coloring should there be in each bowl?
Read the problem, identify keywords, and decide which number is the dividend and which number is the divisor.
Keywords: divide equally
0.384 ounces has to be divided equally into 4 bowls so the divisor is 4 and the dividend is 0.384.
If the divisor is a whole number, go to step 4. If not, decide the power of ten that will make the divisor a whole number.
The divisor is a whole number.
If the dividend is a decimal number, line up the decimal point of the dividend with the decimal point of the quotient. You may need to include zeros as place holders.
Do long division.
Label your answer appropriately.
The quotient is 0.096 which means that there will be 0.096 ounces of food coloring in each bowl.
The ice cream sandwiches at school sell for \$1.12. Amelia has \$8.96. How many ice cream sandwiches can she buy?
Read the problem, identify keywords, and decide which number is the dividend and which number is the divisor.
The total amount of \$8.96 will be divided by \$1.12 in order to see how many ice cream sandwiches can be bought.
1.12 is the divisor and 8.96 is the dividend.
If the divisor is a whole number, go to step 4. If not, decide the power of ten that will make the divisor a whole number.
The divisor is 1.12, which is not a whole number. Multiply the divisor by 100 to make it a whole number.
Multiply both the divisor and the dividend by the same power of \bf{10} .
Multiply 1.12 \times 100 which is the same as 1.12 \times 10^2
Multiply 8.98 \times 100 which is the same as 8.98 \times 10^2
1.12 \times 100 = 112
8.98 \times 100 = 896
If the dividend is a decimal number, line up the decimal point of the dividend with the decimal point of the quotient. You may need to include zeros as place holders.
Do long division.
Label your answer appropriately.
The quotient is 8 which represents the amount of ice cream sandwiches. Amelia can buy 8 ice cream sandwiches.
1. Solve the decimal division problem.
12.82 \div 0.4 = \; ?
The divisor is 0.4. Multiply the decimal divisor by 10 to make it a whole number.
Also, multiply the dividend by 10.
0.4 \times 10 = 4
12.82 \times 10 = 128.2
Line up the decimal place of the dividend with the decimal place of the quotient.
Use the algorithm of long division to divide.
2. Solve the decimal division problem.
17.43 \div 7 = \; ?
The divisor is 7.
Line up the decimal place of the dividend with the decimal place of the quotient. Use the algorithm of long division to divide.
3. Solve the decimal division problem.
105 \div 0.15 = \; ?
The divisor is 0.15 which is not a whole number. Multiply the divisor by 100 to make it a whole number. Also, multiply the dividend by 100.
This is the same as multiplying by 10^2.
Line up the decimal place of the dividend with the decimal place of the quotient.
Use the algorithm of long division to divide.
4. Solve the decimal division problem.
87.22 \div 1.4 = \; ?
The divisor is 1.4. Multiply the decimal divisor by 10 to make it a whole number. Also, multiply the dividend by 10 to make it a whole number.
Line up the decimal place of the dividend with the decimal place of the quotient.
Use the algorithm of long division to divide.
5. Over a three day period, Mila ran a total of 12.36 miles. If she ran the same distance every day, how many miles did she run per day?
4.2 miles
4.12 miles
3.12 miles
4.1 miles
The divisor is 3 and the dividend is 12.36. The divisor is a whole number. Line up the decimal place of the dividend with the decimal place of the quotient. Use the algorithm of long division to divide.
6. William baseball card collector. He has saved up \$54.30 to buy the small packs of baseball cards. If each pack of cards cost \$3.62. How many small packs of cards can he buy?
15 small packs
16 small packs
14 small packs
15.5 small packs
The divisor is 3.62 and the dividend is 54.30. There is a decimal divisor which needs to be multiplied by 100 to make it a whole number. The dividend also needs to be multiplied by 100.
3.62 \times 100 = 362
54.30 \times 100 = 5,430
Use the algorithm of long division to divide.
By multiplying by the appropriate power of ten, you are moving the decimal point. As a shortcut, you can just move the decimal point.
In order to maintain equality, you will have to multiply the dividend by the same power of ten. For example:
1.8 \div 0.2 = 9 is equal to 18 \div 2 = 9
1.8 \div 0.2 = 9 is not equal to 1.8 \div 2 = 0.9
Yes, the divisor doesn’t have to be smaller than the dividend.
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