# What is a Long Division? Long division is a written method of dividing a large number, usually by another large (at least 2-digit) number.

How to Do Long Division with decimals and whole numbers (Steps and Explanation)

In most division calculations, the following equation is completed.

Dividend ÷ Divisor = Quotient

To complete this calculation with multiple digits, a long division is necessary. Find out how to do long division with decimals and whole numbers in 9 steps below. The full method is as follows:

• Put the numbers into the correct equation. Write the dividend on the right, hanging under a division symbol, and put the divisor on the left. In the example below, 591 is the dividend, and 12 is the divisor.

• Divide the first digit of the dividend by the divisor. If the divisor is larger than the first digit of the dividend, you will end up with a decimal less than 1. You can use a 0 in this case as a placeholder. In our example, 12 is larger than 5, so we can write a 0.

• Next, look at the first two digits of the dividend and try to divide them by the divisor. If this is not enough, you can keep expanding the number of digits until you get a larger number. In this case, you need to determine how many 12s there are in 59. The answer is 4 – write this answer in the appropriate place above the division symbol, ensuring columns are correctly filled out. So 4 needs to go above the 9. You then need to write the product of 4 and 12 (48) under 59 and subtract, giving 11.

• Then, you need to bring down the next digit from the dividend. In this case, it’s 1 that needs to be brought down – write it next to 11 to make 111.

• Next, work out how many 12s there are in 111. The answer is 9, so you write it above the 1. Then, write the product of 9 and 12 (108) under 111 and subtract it, which gives 3.

• Extend 591 into decimals to continue the long division if needed. The 0 in the tenth place is then brought down and written next to 3 to make 30.

• Work out how many 12s there are in 30 and write the answer above the 0 in the tenth place. Then, write the product of 2 and 12 (24) under 30 and subtract it, giving 6. The 0 is then brought down and written next to 6.

• Finally, find out how many 12s there are in 60. The answer to this is 5, which is written above the 0 in the hundredth place. Write the product of 5 and 12 (60) under 60 and subtract it, giving zero.

We hope this long division step-by-step guide has made it easy for children to understand how to do long division, and the steps are easy to follow. Also, look at the suggested resources at the bottom of the page, which are here to help your pupils master long division.

Long Division Examples

You’ve seen a step-by-step guide to the long division process, but things often don’t start to click in maths until we see them in practice. So, let’s go through a few examples of long division.

Why not try testing these out on your students to consolidate their understanding of long division? These word questions are great because they require kids to find the sum before they solve it.

Example 1

Laura is in charge of setting up the hall for assembly. She has 150 chairs and puts them into equal rows of 16. How many chairs are in each row?

Let’s put our number into the equation.

150 ÷ 16 = Quotient

We must go through the steps detailed above to get the correct answer.

We can’t have 0.375 of a chair, so we round the answer down.

Example 2

Matthew is going on holiday with his family. They board a large plane containing 360 seats divided into rows. Each row has eight seats. How many rows of seats are there on the plane?

Let’s put our number into the equation.

360 ÷ 8 = Quotient

We must go through the steps detailed above to get the correct answer.