Unit 1: Number Sense

Topic D: Ordering Numerals

We arrange numerals in order from smallest to largest. Sorting numbered papers such as order forms, arranging items by the date and comparing prices are some of the ways you use this skill.

Look at two numerals and tell which one is larger. How do you do this?

Exercise 1

Draw a line under the larger numeral in each pair.

  1. 43, 48
  2. 27, 21
  3. 64, 63
  4. 24, 35
  5. 92, 89
  6. 72, 81

Answers to Exercise 1

  1. 27
  2. 64
  3. 35
  4. 92
  5. 81

To compare numerals, look at the place with the largest value.

Example A: Compare 63 and 59

Look at the tens place.

  • 63 has a 6 in the tens place
  • 59 has a 5 in the tens place.
  • 63 is larger than 59.

Example B: Compare 496 and 476

Look at the hundreds place.

  • Both have 4’s.

Look at the tens place.

  • 496 has a 9 in the tens place
  • 476 has a 7 in the tens place.
  • 496 is larger than 476.

Note: Numerals with one digit are always less than numerals with two digits. Numerals with two digits are always less than numerals with three digits, and so on.

  • 9 is less than 15
  • 87 is less than 107
  • 999 is less than 1 001

Exercise 2

Draw a line under the larger numeral in each pair. Check your work using the answer key at the end of the exercise.

  1. 36, 46
  2. 580, 59
  3. 87, 67
  4. 716, 116
  5. 429, 449
  6. 289, 283
  7. 471, 422
  8. 316, 322
  9. 876, 318

Answers to Exercise 2

  1. 580
  2. 87
  3. 716
  4. 449
  5. 289
  6. 471
  7. 322
  8. 876

Exercise 3

Draw a line under the larger numeral in each pair. Check your work using the answer key at the end of the exercise.

  1. 148, 151
  2. 129, 132
  3. 34, 37
  4. 325, 236
  5. 118, 13
  6. 489 423
  7. 471, 422
  8. 316, 322
  9. 876, 319

Answers to Exercise 3

  1. 132
  2. 37
  3. 325
  4. 118
  5. 489
  6. 471
  7. 322
  8. 876

Now use the same ideas to arrange more than two numerals in order. For example, to arrange 6, 616, 1, 66, 666, 61, and 16 in order from smallest to largest, use the following method.

First, sort the numerals with the same number of digits into groups:

  • 6, 1
  • 66, 61, 16, and
  • 616, 666

The group of one digit numerals contains 6 and 1. As 1 is smaller than 6, the list starts with 1, then 6.

The group of two-digit numerals contains 66, 61, and 16. Use your skills in ordering numerals to see that 16 is smallest, then 61, and 66 is the largest of this group. The list now reads, 1, 6, 16, 61, 66.

Finally, look at the three-digit numerals, 616 and 666. As 616 is smaller than 666, it will come first. The list now reads: 1, 6, 16, 61, 66, 616, 666.

Exercise 4

Arrange these numbers in order from smallest to largest. Check your work using the answer key at the end of the exercise.

  1. 323, 32, 332, 33, 3, 322, 2
  2. 44, 7, 474, 47, 744, 74, 77
  3. 123, 135, 152, 125
  4. 472, 427, 452, 475

Answers to Exercise 4

  1. 2, 3, 32, 33, 322, 323, 332
  2. 7, 44, 47, 74, 77, 474, 744
  3. 123, 125, 135, 152
  4. 427, 452, 472, 475

Greater Than, Less Than, Equals

The sign < means “is less than” (smaller than).

The sign > means “is greater than” (bigger than).

The greater than and less than signs always point to the smaller number. That is, the point or the tip of the sign is close to the small number.

  • 5 < 12 means 5 is less than 12
  • 6 > 3 means 6 is greater than 3

The sign = means “equals” and is used when two amounts are the same.

Remember

The hungry mouth goes to the biggest number.

seven is less than 8

Exercise 5

Write <, >, or = in each blank as needed. Check your work using the answer key at the end of the exercise.

  1. 3     <      5
  2.     >      7
  3. 12           9
  4. 28           28
  5. 48           84
  6. 376           376
  7. 520           530
  8. 582           521
  9. 674           296
  10. 214           251
  11. 879           900
  12. 784           784

Answers to Exercise 5

  1. >
  2. =
  3. <
  4. =
  5. <
  6. >
  7. >
  8. <
  9. <
  10. =

Topic D Self-Test

Mark     /12             Aim    10/12

  1. Box the larger number of each pair. (6 marks)
    1. 978, 789
    2. 566, 556
    3. 120, 142
    4. 701, 710
    5. 430, 403
    6. 879, 987
  2. Arrange these numerals in order from smallest to largest. (2 marks)
    1. 75, 754, 475, 47, 747, 574, 775
    2. 18, 237, 429, 824, 37, 994, 112
  3. Write >, <. or = in each blank to make a true statement. (4 marks)
    1. 678           768
    2. 102           100
    3. 463           846
    4. 101           101

Answers to Topic D Self Test

    1. 978
    2. 566
    3. 142
    4. 710
    5. 430
    6. 987
    1. 47, 75, 475, 574, 747, 754, 775
    2. 18, 37, 112, 237, 429, 824, 994
    1. <
    2. >
    3. <
    4. =

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Adult Literacy Fundamentals Mathematics: Book 1 - 2nd Edition by Wendy Tagami and Liz Girard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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