Is two less than, equal to, or
greater than one?
In this problem, we’re given two
numbers: one of them is written as a numeral and the other is written using
words. The numbers are two and one. In order to be able to answer the
question, we need to understand what each of the three symbols means. So let’s go through them one by
Out of the three symbols, perhaps
the two that are trickiest to remember are the two that are like arrows. This might be because we use the
equal sign a lot more often. Well, it could be because the
arrows look so similar. It’s easy to become confused
Let’s remind ourselves what each
symbol means. Firstly, it’s important to remember
that we always read statements from left to right. Looking at the first symbol from
left to right, we can see that the part on the left is narrower than the part on the
If we were to make towers of cubes,
less cubes will fit on the left than on the right. And so if we read this symbol from
left to right, it stands for is less than. Our second symbol is the opposite
way around. Reading it from left to right, we
can see that the wider part of the symbol is on the left and the narrower part is on
And so again, a good way of
remembering it is if we were to make towers of cubes, we’d see that more cubes fit
on the left than on the right. And so this symbol stands for is
greater than. And of course, we know that the
equal sign represents is the same as.
Interestingly, we could still use
our tower of cubes idea to show that both sides of an equal sign are the same. So which one of the three symbols
belongs in between the numbers two and one?
Remember we must always read our
statement from left to right. And so we can say that two is greater
than one. And so the symbol that needs to go
in between both numbers is this one: two is greater than one.