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Decimal Fundamentals: Order of Decimal Numbers

12 . 0.3 . 329.53 . 0.00002 . 44,801 . 0.099 . Which number is the largest? Which number is the smallest?

We write all numbers vertically - up and down. We line up the decimal points - we put all decimal points above and below each other:

 
        12.
         0.3
       329.53
         0.00002
     44801.
         0.099

 

The numbers 12 and 44,801 don't have a decimal point because when we use these numbers in everyday life, they don't need a decimal point. However, if we have both whole numbers (numbers that are not fractions) and decimal numbers (numbers that are fractions) then - to make things easier for us - we write a decimal point after any whole number.

Which number has the largest place value? 44,801 - because the largest place value of this number is 40,000 (forty thousands).


We now have the following numbers:


      0.009 
      0.00081
      0.12
      0.065

All of these numbers are decimals. We again ask: Which number has the largest place value? 0.12 - because the largest place value of this number is 0.1 (one tenths).


The following two numbers both have a value of 1 in the tenths column:

      0.1299 
      0.14

For each number, we must look at the value for the hundredths column. 0.14 is the larger number because 4 hundredths is greater than 2 hundredths.

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