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Powers of Ten

Counting the Zeros

A power of 10 is a number that can have 10 as its only factors. For instance, (10 × 10) = 100 and (10  × 10  × 10  × 10) = 10,000 are both powers of 10. Multiplying and dividing by powers of 10 is as easy as counting the zeros and moving your decimal point the same number of places.

Part 1: Multiplying by Powers of 10

PROCEDURE: To multiply a number by a power of 10, move the decimal point to the right the same number of places as there are zeros in the power of 10. If there are not enough places in your number to do this, you will need to add zeros to the number as place holders.

SAMPLE PROBLEM: Multiply 8.25 by 10, 100, and 1000.

Part 2: Dividing by Powers of 10

PROCEDURE: To divide a number by a power of 10, move the decimal point to the left as many places as there are zeros in the power of 10.

SAMPLE PROBLEM: Divide 763 by 10, 1000, and 100,000.

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