Now here we have one rectangle. Let’s draw a line through the rectangle so we have two equal parts. Now we will shade one part of the rectangle green. We now have one part of two equal parts or one-half shaded green. We write this as one part out of two equal parts or one-half.
Let’s look at another rectangle. Notice that this rectangle is exactly the same size as the first rectangle. This time, we want four equal part. Let’s shade one part out of four equal purple. Now can you remember from our first example how to write this? We write it as one part out of four equal parts or one-quarter
Now here’s another rectangle. Now again it is exactly the same size as the other two rectangles. Now let’s make eight equal parts. We will shade one part out of eight equal parts yellow, and we write it as one part out of eight equal parts, or one-eighth.
Now let’s look at all the rectangles again. In the first example, we made two equal parts and we shaded one part out of two equal parts or one-half green. In the second example, we made four equal parts and we shaded the one part out of four equal parts or one-quarter purple. And in the last example, we made eight equal parts and we shaded one part out of eight equal parts or one-eighth yellow.
Remember each rectangle is exactly the same size. Now, what do you notice about the size of the parts? If you said, “The size of the parts get smaller as the number of parts gets bigger”, you’re correct. Looking at the shaded parts we can see that one-quarter is smaller than one-half, and one-eighth is smaller than both one-quarter and one-half.