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Study Guide : Ordering Numbers

Learner Guide



Ordering Numbers

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When ordering numbers, it is a good idea to compare the digits in their place

values, especially when the numbers look very similar.


We compare the largest place value first, then slowly move down until we find

a difference. There are also some mathematical signs we can use to show the

information we have found out.


          This means ‘less than’ so for example, 6 < 7

   This means ‘more than’ so for example, 10 > 5


Think of the signs as the snapping jaws of crocodiles.

The jaws of the crocodile should always be facing the bigger number.

Remember, crocodiles are greedy so that’s the number they’ll eat.


We can also use ordering to compare decimals in the same way

and we can also use ordering to list numbers from largest to

smallest or smallest to largest.


Example 2.    

Let’s try a slightly harder example this time, using a few numbers instead of two.

We’re also going to use decimals.

We’ve collected the weights of four bags of sugar and we want to order the

smallest to the largest.


The weights are:

3.23kg   3.32kg   3.37kg   3.19kg        

    3.32        3.37       3.19      3

    3              3             3           0.2

    0.3          0.3          0.1


Here we can see that there’s a difference between some of the numbers.  

The 0.1 is smallest, then 0.2 but we don’t know the difference between he

two 0.3 so we have to carry on with only them. 

0.02 0.07   0.07 is larger than 0.02 so we now have all the information we

need to order the four numbers: 3.19kg , 3.23kg , 3.32kg , 3.37kg


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Related Topics

Place-value                       Rounding Numbers                                     Polygons

Quadrilaterals                  Addition-Calculations                               Subtraction-Calculations


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