Equivalent Fractions
Basics on the topic Equivalent Fractions
Equivalent Fractions
Oftentimes, there is more than one way to display fractions. But what exactly are equivalent fractions? Below you will find an in depth explanation of equivalent fractions, examples for teaching equivalent fractions, and examples of equivalent fractions.
Equivalent Fractions – Definition
What Does it Mean When Two Fractions are Equivalent?
The word equivalent means the same, so an equivalent fraction is the same fraction but written differently. Equivalent fractions are fractions that are from the same whole with numerators and denominators different from one another but identical in value.
Identifying Equivalent Fractions
Models help with how to tell if fractions are equivalent. We can compare the value of different fractions from the same whole using models called fraction bars. Fraction bars show us whether or not the fractions are equivalent, or equal in value. We can draw and label two models that show equivalent fractions.
Assuming the fractions are from the same whole, when two fractions are equivalent it means that their numerator and denominator are different from each other but the value of the fraction is the same.
Equivalent Fractions – Example
Let’s begin by comparing equivalent fractions such as onehalf and twofourths. To determine if they are equal in value, the first step is to draw equivalent fractions models for both fractions. Represent the first fraction by shading that bar to represent onehalf.
Then, represent the second fraction on a bar of identical size by shading it to represent twofourths.
Finally, compare the shaded values of both bars to see if fractions are equivalent. Each fraction bar has the same quantity shaded, which means they are equal in value. Since they are equal in value, the fractions onehalf and two fourths are equivalent.
Let’s try one more example using foursixths and twofifths to tell whether the fractions are equivalent. We will see if they are equivalent fractions with models. To determine if they are equal in value, we will draw the fraction bar to represent the first fraction. Shade that fraction bar to represent foursixths.
Then, draw a second fraction bar of identical size to represent the second fraction. Shade that fraction bar to represent twofifths.
Finally, compare the shaded value of both bars. Since the shaded values are different, one half and two fifths are not equivalent fractions.
Equivalent Fractions – Summary of Steps
As an introduction to equivalent fractions, we model equivalent fractions in 3rd grade. We can compare the value of different fractions from the same whole using models called fraction bars. Fraction bars show us whether or not the fractions are equivalent, or equal in value. To determine if two fractions from the same whole are equivalent:
Step #  What to do 

1  Draw and shade a fraction bar to represent the first fraction. 
2  Draw and shade another fraction bar of identical size to represent the second fraction. 
3  Compare the shaded values of both bars. 
4  If they are equal in value, the fractions are equivalent. 
Below is an overview of some common equivalent fractions which you might encounter frequently.
Original fraction  Possible equivalent fractions 

Equivalent fractions for 1/3  2/6 3/9 4/12 
Equivalent fractions for 1/4  2/8 3/12 4/16 
Equivalent fractions for 1/2  2/4 3/6 4/8 5/10 
Have you done equivalent fractions practice yet? On this website, you can also find 3rd grade equivalent fractions worksheets and exercises.
Frequently Asked Questions regarding Equivalent Fractions
Transcript Equivalent Fractions
Axel and Tank are babysitting Axel’s little brother, Odell. Axel's mom left very strict instructions for them to follow. Odell needs onehalf of a bottle in the morning, foursixths of a bottle in the afternoon and onefourth of a bottle before bed. There's only one problem: his mom took the diaper bag with all the bottles! In order to feed Baby Odell, Axel and Tank need to find "Equivalent Fractions". Equivalent fractions are fractions from the same whole with numerators and denominators different from one another but identical in value. We can compare the value of different fractions from the same whole using fraction bars. Fraction bars show us whether or not the fractions are equivalent, or equal in value. Let's use Baby Odell's first bottle to explain. Mom's instructions say that he needs onehalf of a bottle right away, but Axel and Tank are using a same sized container filled to twofourths. To determine if one half and two fourths are equivalent. First, draw a fraction bar to represent the first fraction. Shade the bar to represent onehalf. Then, draw a fraction bar of the identical size to represent the second fraction. Shade the bar to represent twofourths. Finally, compare the shaded values of both bars. Each fraction bar has the same quantity shaded, which means they are equal in value. Since they are equal in value, the fractions onehalf and two fourths are equivalent. Axel and Tank can feed baby Odell the container filled to twofourths because it is the same amount as Mom instructed. For the next feeding, Mom said Odell needs foursixths of a bottle, but they are using a samesized container filled to twofifths. To determine if foursixths and two fifths are equivalent. Draw the fraction bar to represent the first fraction. Shade the fraction bar to represent foursixths. Then, draw a fraction bar of identical size to represent the second fraction. Shade the fraction bar to represent twofifths. Finally, compare the shaded value of both bars. Since the shaded values are different, one half and two fifths are not equivalent. Axel and Tank try using another same sized container filled to two thirds this time. What should they do first? They should draw and shade the fraction bar to represent two thirds. Finally, they should compare the shaded value of foursixths and twothirds. Since they are the same, foursixths and two thirds are equivalent. Axel and Tank can feed Baby Odell this container because it is the same amount that Mom instructed. For the last bottle, Mom said to give him one fourth of a bottle, but Axel and Tank are using a same sized container filled to foursixteenths. Pause the video here to determine if one fourth and foursixteenths are equivalent. Now let's check our work! We draw and shade the fraction bar to represent onefourth. Then, we draw and shade another fraction bar to represent foursixteenths. The last step is to compare the shaded quantities of both bars. These fractions are equivalent because they show the same value. Axel and Tank can feed Odell the last container since it's the same amount as Mom instructed. "Pee yew! What is that smell?" Before we can figure out where the smell is coming from, let's remember. Equivalent fractions are fractions from the same whole with numerators and denominators different from one another but identical in value. We can compare the value of different fractions from the same whole using fraction bars. Fraction bars show us whether or not the fractions are equivalent, or equal in value. To determine if two fractions from the same whole are equivalent... first, draw and shade a fraction bar to represent the first fraction. Then, draw and shade another fraction bar of identical size to represent the second fraction. Finally, compare the shaded values of both bars. If they are equal in value, the fractions are equivalent. "Oh no, Axel! I think I figured out where the smell is coming from." "It's ok, my mom got home just in time!"
Equivalent Fractions exercise

Can you match the fraction to the picture?
HintsLook at the numerator (top part of the fraction). It should match the amount filled in.
Look at the denominator (bottom part of the fraction). It should match the number of equal parts.
This bottle shows $\frac{3}{4}$.
The bottle is split into 4 equal parts. The milk is filled to the 3rd line.
SolutionThis image shows the correct fraction for each bottle.
The denominator is the number of equal parts your whole in broken into.
The denominator in $\frac{2}{3}$ is 3
The bottle is broken into 3 equal parts.The numerator is the number of parts shaded, filled in, and taken from the whole.
The numerator in $\frac{2}{3}$ is 2 The bottle shows the milk filled to 2 of the 3 parts. 
Determine which fraction is equivalent to the given fraction.
HintsLook at the fraction bar, what is equivalent to $\frac{4}{6}$ ?
Equivalent fractions show the same value.
SolutionEquivalent fractions represent the same value with different numerators and denominators .
In order to determine if fractions are equivalent you can draw fraction bars.
Each bar should represent each fraction.
If the shaded portions of each fraction bar are equal to each other then they are equivalent .Even though the bottles are broken into different equal parts, because the bottles are the same size, when the milk is filled to the same height, they have the same amount.

Which fraction is equivalent?
HintsDraw fraction bars to determine if the fractions are equivalent.
To make fractions equivalent the shaded part of the fraction bars should be equal.
$\frac{3}{6}$ is the same as a half, what other fraction is equivalent to a half?
SolutionEquivalent fractions are fractions with different numerators and denominators but represent the same value.
You can draw fraction bars to determine if fractions are equivalent.

Sort the fractions into the correct label.
HintsEquivalent fractions represent the same value.
Both rectangles have $\frac{1}{2}$ shaded and the amount shaded is the same.
SolutionIf fractions are equivalent you have to determine if the fractions represent an equal value.
Equivalent fractions represent the same value.
Equivalent fractions have different numerators and denominators. 
Write the missing numerator to make the fractions equivalent.
HintsLook at the fraction bars, what fraction is equivalent to two thirds?
How many sixths do you need to color to equal $\frac{2}{3}$ ?
SolutionTo determine if fractions are equivalent you can draw fraction bars.
First, show $\frac{2}{3}$ in a fraction bar.
Second, make a fraction bar divided into six equal parts.
Third, color each sixth until it is equivalent in size to $\frac{2}{3}$ .

Match the fraction bar to the equivalent fraction.
HintsDraw a fraction bar for the given fraction.
The shaded portion of the fraction bars should be the same if they are equivalent.
How many fifths are equivalent to $\frac{4}{10}?
SolutionEquivalent fractions have different numerators and denominators but represent the same value.
To determine if fractions are equivalent you can create fraction bars.
If the shaded portion for each fraction bar is the same size, that means the fractions are equivalent.