The ability to find the factor pairs is a useful math skill usually taught to students as an introduction to algebra. The process is fairly simple and the student needs only a basic understanding of multiplication.

## Natural numbers

A natural number is any whole number that is not zero. This means that any number from one to infinity is a natural number, if it doesn't have a decimal point or fraction associated with it. For example, 28 is a natural number, but 28.5 is not.

## Multiplication

Most students learn multiplication by studying multiplication tables. When two or more numbers are multiplied together, the result is called the product. For instance, in the equation: 2 x 3 = 6, the product is 6.

## Factor

Factors are numbers that are multiplied together to obtain a product. The product of 5 x 6 = 30. The numbers 5 and 6 are factors.

## Factor Pairs

All natural numbers are the product of at least one factor pair. For instance, 17 has one factor pair: 1 and 17. The number 28 has several factor pairs: 1 and 28; 2 and 12; and 4 and 7. Any two natural numbers that can be multiplied to obtain a specific product is known as a factor pair.

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#### Photo Credits

- ruler with multiplication table image by Stepanov from Fotolia.com