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Math Help - Help Please: Fraction Word Problem

  1. #1
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    Question Help Please: Fraction Word Problem

    This is the problem: Arnie spent 1/2 of his money at the movies, 1/3 of what was left on yogurt, and his last $4 on a gift. How much did Arnie spend?

    I've been able to figure out other ones similar to this problem, but for some reason I can't figure this one out. I'm not sure where to start.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by mary07 View Post
    This is the problem: Arnie spent 1/2 of his money at the movies, 1/3 of what was left on yogurt, and his last $4 on a gift. How much did Arnie spend?

    I've been able to figure out other ones similar to this problem, but for some reason I can't figure this one out. I'm not sure where to start.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
    Let M be his total money.

    M=\frac{M}{2}+\frac{M}{6}+4

    Solve for M.
    Last edited by colby2152; March 4th 2008 at 09:46 AM. Reason: Read it wrong
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  3. #3
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    Hello, Mary!

    We can talk our way through thiis one . . .


    Arnie spent 1/2 of his money at the movies,
    1/3 of what was left on yogurt,
    and his last $4 on a gift.
    How much did Arnie spend?

    Let M = original amount of money.

    He spent half of it the movies. .He spent \frac{1}{2}M dollars.
    . . He had \frac{1}{2}M dollars left.

    He spent a third of this on yogurt. .He spent: . \frac{1}{3}\left(\frac{1}{2}M\right) \:=\:\frac{1}{6}M dollars.
    . . He had: . \frac{1}{2}M - \frac{1}{6}M\:=\:\frac{1}{3}M dollars left.

    This is the $4 he spent on a gift: . \frac{1}{3}M \;=\;4\quad\Rightarrow\quad M \:=\:12


    Therefore, Arnie spent $12.

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  4. #4
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    Whoops, my original solution was going with 1/3 of the original amount, not of what was left.
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  5. #5
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    Thanks to both of you for your quick and detailed help. You made sense of the problem for me. Thanks so much!

    Mary
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