Arranging Integers in Order

Girl with Rocket Diagram
Image Source: http://www.goalfinder.com

An important skill is to be able to place positive and negative “integer” whole numbers into ascending and descending order.


Comparing Integers

A Number Line is very useful for working with directed number Integers.

Pic of a nbr line from the web
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On a number line, NUMBERS TO THE RIGHT ARE BIGGER.

NUMBERS TO THE LEFT ARE LESS THAN ones to the right.

For example: 6 is bigger than 3, but -6 is smaller than 3.

We say that 6 is greater than 3, and we write this as 6 > 3

However, -6 is less than 3, and we write this as -6 < 3

Web pic of nbr line with explanantion
Image Source: http://elgee18.files.wordpress.com

Using Inequality Signs

> means greater than, or bigger than

< means less than, or smaller than. ( less than points to the left )

For the “inequality signs” < and >

THE POINTY ARROW ALWAYS POINTS TO THE SMALLER NUMBER.

Eg. 2 < 4, 8 > 5, -4 < -1, -2 > -6

The Fish Rule

Some people also like to think of the arrow sign as looking like the mouth of a fish.

GT and LT Fish Mouths
Image Source: http://illuminations.nctm.org

They then use the following rule:

“The hungry Fish always wants to eat the bigger amount”.

So the open “<” mouth of the fish always goes towards the bigger item.

Fish Mouths Example
Image Source: http://illuminations.nctm.org

Placing Inequality Signs Rules

When putting a < or > sign in between two integers:

If the first number is more to the right, put a > sign.

If the first number is more to the left, put a < sign.

This will ensure that the arrow always points to the smaller number.

Remember to use a number line, ( especially for negative numbers ), and that :

NUMBERS TO THE RIGHT ARE BIGGER.

NUMBERS TO THE LEFT ARE SMALLER.

THE POINTY ARROW ALWAYS POINTS TO THE SMALLER NUMBER.

Represent Order and Compare Integers

The following is a video about comparing Integers, eg. Greater Than and Less Than, and placing Integers into ascending order.

It has no soundtrack, but has good slides.

The one limitation is that we cannot go full screen.

Click on the image below to go to the web page containing this video.

Image Link to Qicktime Video

Using a Number Line to Order Integers

The following video from “School Tube” gives two examples of plotting Integers onto a Number Line.

We can then write the Integers out from left to right, which gives us their order from lowest to highest.

Click anywhere on the video below to launch the video full screen in a new window.

Schooltube fake embed one

Here is another video about ordering and comparing integers using signs.

Ordering Integers Worksheet

The clickable link below is to a PDF document which gives you practice questions to do, as well as an answer sheet.

Click here for Ordering Integers Worksheet

Ordering Integers Game

In the following game, use the mouse to place the three red integer numbers in order, onto the carriages and the train engine.

The biggest number always goes onto the steam engine.

It is very important to place the numbers exactly in the middle of the carriages and engine like this:

Pic of placing nbrs on train

If your answer is correct, the train should move to the right and off the screen.

Click anywhere on the image below to launch the game in a new window.

Note that you will probably have to page down the screen a bit to get to the actual game.

Integers Order Train Game

Ordering Integers Online Test

The clickable link below will take you to a web page from “Maths Goodies” that has a lesson you can read, followed by a short online test.

Click here to do Integers Online Quiz

Related Items

Introduction to Integers
Adding Integers Using Number Lines
Adding Integers Using Zero Pairs
Subtracting Integers
Multiplying Integers
Dividing Integers
Integers Order of Operations
Directed Number Integers Games
Integers in the Real World
Integers in Drag Racing

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Enjoy,
Passy

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