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Year 7 Interactive Maths - Second Edition


Lowest Common Multiple

The smallest common multiple of two or more numbers is called the lowest common multiple (LCM).

E.g. Multiples of 8 are 8, 16, 24, 32,
       Multiples of 3 are 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24,

The LCM of 3 and 8 is 24.


In general:

To find the lowest common multiple (LCM) of two or more numbers, list the multiples of the larger number and stop when you find a multiple of the other number.  This is the LCM.


Example 3

Find the lowest common multiple of 6 and 9.

Solution:

List the multiples of 9 and stop when you find a multiple of 6.

Multiples of 9 are 9, 18,
Multiples of 6 are 6, 12, 18,

The LCM of 6 and 9 is 18.


Example 4

Find the lowest common multiple of 5, 6 and 8.

Solution:

List the multiples of 8 and stop when you find a multiple of both 5 and 6.

Multiples of 8 are 8, 16, 24, 32, 40, 48, 56, 64, 72, 80, 88, 96, 104, 112, 120,

Stop at 120 as it is a multiple of both 5 and 6.

So, the LCM of 5, 6 and 8 is 120.


Key Terms

lowest common multiple, LCM


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