**Subtracting negative rational numbers :**

We can use number line to subtract negative rational numbers.

If we subtract a negative rational number, we have to move in the positive direction on the number line.

For example, if we want to subtract -0.5 from 5, we have to move 0.5 units from 5 in the positive direction.

**Example 1 : **

Subtract -1.5 from 2.5.

**Solution : **

**Step 1 : **

Since we subtract the negative rational number -1.5 from 2.5, we have to move 1.5 units from 2.5 in the positive direction on the number line.

It has been illustrated in the picture given below.

**Step 2 : **

After having moved 1.5 units in the positive direction from 2.5, we are in the position of "4"

Hence, 2.5 - (-1.5) = 4

**Example 2 : **

Subtract -2.5 from -2.

**Solution : **

**Step 1 : **

Since we subtract the negative rational number -2.5 from -2, we have to move 2.5 units from -2 in the positive direction on the number line.

It has been illustrated in the picture given below.

**Step 2 :**

After having moved 2.5 units in the positive direction from -2, we are in the position of "0.5"

Hence, -2 - (-2.5) = 0.5

**Example 3 : **

During the hottest week of the summer, the water level of the Muskrat River was 5/6 foot below normal. The following week, the level was 1/3 foot below normal. What is the overall change in the water level ?

**Solution :**

Subtract to find the difference in water levels. That is, we have to find -1/3 - (-5/6)

**Step 1 : **

Since we subtract the negative rational number -5/6 from -1/3, we have to move 5/6 units from -1/3 in the positive direction on the number line.

It has been illustrated in the picture given below.

**Step 2 :**

After having moved 5/6 units in the positive direction from -1/3, we are in the position of "1/2"

Hence, the water level changed 1/2 foot.

After having gone through the stuff given above, we hope that the students would have understood "How to subtract negative rational numbers".

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