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# Simple Algebra Topic

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SIMPLE ALGEBRA What is simple algebra? Simple algebra is the term used when using expressions with letters or variables that represent numbers. Words can be changed into a mathematical expression by using the words, plus, exceeds, diminished, less, times, the product, divided, the quotient and many more. A simple algebraic expression can be solved by filling in a number for the variable. Word problems can be turned into simple algebraic expressions by changing the words to mathematical terms. With simple algebra, mental math can be used to solve equations. Mental math is looking at a problem and figuring out the answer mentally. How to use simple algebra: • An example of a simple algebraic expression is 3x + 5. Here the x represents a number that is to be multiplied by three. If x = 2, then the expression equals 3 · 2 + 5 = 11. By filling in 2 for the x, the expression can be solved. • Words can be changed into mathematical terms. Look at the following words and translate into mathematical terms: Example: Five times a number minus three → 5 · n - 3 Each word represents a mathematical term. Once this is done, the expression can either be left this way or solved if given a value for n. • Word problems are also changed into expression in the same way. © Copyright NewPath Learning. All Rights Reserved. Permission is granted for the purchaser to print copies for non-commercial educational purposes only. Visit us at www.NewPathLearning.com.

Look at this word problem: Jack rented a movie. The store charged $1.99 for the first day and $.50 for each day after that. Jack had the movie for four days. Write an expression for the cost of renting a movie in terms of d, days. $1.99 for the first day and $.50 for each day after that means 1.99 plus .50 x d → the expression is 1.99 + .50d This expression can be solved when 3 is substituted for d (the number of days Jack had the movie beyond the first day). So, 1.99 + .50 x 3 = 1.99 + 1.50 = 3.49 or $3.49. • Mental math can also be used to solve simple algebraic equations. The equation 6 + n = 10 is easy to solve because 4 is recognized as the answer right away. That is how mental math works. The equation 2x = 14 is another example of mental math. The answer of 7 comes to mind right away. Try this! 1. Solve if n = 3: 7 - n 2n + 8 4n ÷ 6 2. Translate into a mathematical expression: Six times a number minus two A number plus seven 3. Translate the word problem into an expression in terms of d, days: Sharon rents a car that costs $89 for the first day and $50 for every day after that. She rents the car for d, days. 4. Solve with mental math: 7 · n = 56 11 + n = 20 64 ÷ n = 8 © Copyright NewPath Learning. All Rights Reserved. Permission is granted for the purchaser to print copies for non-commercial educational purposes only. Visit us at www.NewPathLearning.com.