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When using this activity I like to de-emphasize the use of cross-multiplication (In general, I have found that the use of cross-multiplication does not lead to a better/deeper understanding of ratios and proportions, but is rather a quick, procedural shortcut that is completed robotically without reflection.). Instead, I like to promote thinking of ratios as multiplicative comparisons. For example, if the scale is 4 miles to 1 inch, then the number of miles is always 4 times greater than the number of inches (and the number of inches is always 1/4 the number of miles).