> Understanding Ratios <


What is a Ratio?

A ratio is a comparison of two numbers or two
amount that can be expressed in the following
three ways:

as a Fraction
with a colon (:)
using the word “to”


Suppose you are told that there are three teachers for
every 12 students at your son School. The three ways this
ratio of teachers to students can be written are:

Ratio of teachers to students

12 to 3


Notice that in each case, the number of teachers is written first (or
in the numerator of the fraction). This is because the problem
stated that we were to express the ratio of teachers  to students. 
Typically the first thing mentioned in a ratio problem is what is
listed first.


If the problem had asked us to express the number of students to
teachers , each of our ratios would be written in the opposite

Ratio of students to teachers
12 to 3


A owner  at a local restaurant notes that during the day his
customers ordered 3 breakfast meal for every 1 diner meal . 
Express the ratio of breakfast meal to dinner meals.

Ratio of breakfast meal to dinner meals
3 to 1