 # Dividing More Than Two Values

Will you get a lot of problems where you divide more than two numbers? No. You might find one as an extra credit problem or in a weird fraction. We wanted to take a moment to talk about them so that you understand some things you cannot do in division. Just like subtraction, you are limited to the way you move numbers around in all division problems. Order is the most important thing. Look at the differences in these answers.

50 ÷ 2 ÷ 5 = ?
Correct:
(50 ÷ 2) ÷ 5 = 5
Incorrect:
50 ÷ (2 ÷ 5) = 125
2 ÷ 50 ÷ 5 = 0.008 (You'll understand this when we get to decimals.)
2 ÷ (50 ÷ 5) = 0.2
5 ÷ 2 ÷ 50 = 0.05
5 ÷ (2 ÷ 50) = 125

You can't switch values around. You need to work in order.

However... Some of you may have noticed that 50 ÷ 5 ÷ 2 = 5. You could have switched the last two numbers and gotten the same quotient. That can sometimes happen with a division problem, but you can't depend on it, so it is not a rule you can follow.

# Watch the Process

So let's do a problem with three values and watch the order.

Problem:
675 ÷ 25 ÷ 9 ÷ 3 = ?
Answer:
Step 1: 675 ÷ 25 = 27
Step 2: 27 ÷ 9 = 3
Step 3: 3 ÷ 3 =1
So...
675 ÷ 25 ÷ 9 ÷ 3 = 1

Problem:
675 ÷ 25 ÷ (9 ÷ 3) = ? (Remember the order of operations now.)
Answer:
Step 1: 9 ÷ 3 = 3
Your problem now looks like: 675 ÷ 25 ÷ 3 = ?
Step 2: 675 ÷ 25 = 27
Step 3: 27 ÷ 3 = 9
So...
675 ÷ 25 ÷ (9 ÷ 3) = 9

See how much the order matters in a division problem? Make sure you pay attention when you do longer problems and just work step-by-step.

## Related Activities One and Two-Digit Division Quiz (With Remainders) - Play Activity One and Two-Digit Division Quiz (No Remainders) - Play Activity

► NEXT PAGE ON ARITHMETIC
► RETURN TO TOP OF PAGE

► Or search the sites...  # Related Links

Numbernut: Operations
Numbernut: Numbers and Counting
Numbernut: Fractions and Decimals
Biology4Kids: Scientific Method
Biology4Kids: Logic
Chem4Kids: Elements

NumberNut Sections

Rader's Network of Science and Math Sites