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Learn How to Solve 1-Digit Division Problems

Today we are going to look at some examples on solving 1-digit division problems. In these types of problems, we need to divide numbers by a divisor that only has 1 digit. Before starting, feel free to click on the following links to review how to divide by 1-digit numbers: Division Word Problems With Decimals

Ready?  Let’s start with some examples where we have to divide in order to find the answer:


Jane and her friends are going on an excursion to the countryside in 3 days. The trip costs a total of 72 dollars and we know that 8 people will go on the excursion. If they are going to divide the price into equal parts, how much will each person have to pay? 

1) First, we have to read the problem carefully. What have we understood?

  • 8 people are going to go on an excursion.
  • They’ll go in 3 days.
  • The total cost of the excursion is 72dollars, and they’ll divide it into equal parts.

2) Now, let’s read the question and digest it. What is it asking us?  What kind of information do we need in order to answer?

It is asking us how much money does each person who is going on the excursion have to pay?

  • We’ll have to use the following information: the total price of the excursion (72dollars) and the number of people who are going (8)
  • IMPORTANT: There is a piece of information given that we don’t need to solve the problem: knowing that the excursion will take place in 3 days doesn’t help us solve the problem.

3) Let’s move on to think about what kind of mathematical operation we need to use here.

We know that everyone is going to pay, which means in order to split up the total amount between all the people, we need to divide:

72 / 8 = 9

Each person will pay 9 dollars

4) So let’s think about the number that we ended up with:  Does it make sense that each person pays 9 dollars?

Yes, because if we add each persons’ share, 9+9+9+9+9+9+9+9 or, expressed in a different way, if we multiply the 8 people by the 9 dollars that each one pays, 8 x 9, we’ll get 72 dollars, which is the total price of the excursion.

See that?  In order to correctly solve a division problem using a 1-digit number, dividing all the given numbers just isn’t enough. We have to understand, analyze and reflect on what the problem is saying before solving it.  We also need to reflect after getting the answer to check if it’s correct.

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Diane Ackerman
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