Understanding an Equation

Elementary Math (K-6th) Tutorial

Understanding an Equation

Intro

Algebra has many definition and formulas to memorize to complete the problem. Humans mainly learn by hearing, seeing, writing, and reading. However, there are multiple ways to solve a problem. My son is going into 3rd grade and he learns best by having fun. Let’s think of an algebra equation as a weighing scale trying to balance the two sides.

Sample Problem

2x-9= 15
When you are first learning to solve an equation, always think of the equal sign (=) as being the scale to balance each side out. The first step is to get X (the variable) all by its self.

x=24


x= 2x


x= 12


Solution

When you are first learning to solve an equation, always think of the equal sign (=) as being the scale to balance each side out.
1. The first step is to get X (the variable) all by its self.
2. Let’s make it fun, think of the x being the golden number to a trip of your choice.
3. 2x-9= 15 We can assume that (-9) needs to switch to the other side of the scale to get x by itself
4. In a real life scenario if we was (-9) in our bank we would deposit (+9) to balance out our checking account.
5. 2x-9= 15
+9 +9
6. The 9’s cancel out to zero leaving 2x=15+9 (add 15 +9)
7. 2x=24
8. The final step is getting the 2 on the other side of the scale to find the accurate number, therefore, we will know the golden number for our ultimate vacation.
9. By looking at the end of the equation we are getting so close.
10. Since we have to follow order of operations, we notice (2 times x)
11. This gives us a clue to do the opposite of times and then divide both sides.
12. We take 2x/2 = 24/2 and do the exact operations to the right side and the 2x/2 cancels out the two leaving x=24/2 then ***************X=12
YOU WERE A WINNER, YOU WERE ABLE TO SOLVE FOR X AND KNOW YOU HAVE THE GOLDEN NUMBER 12 VACATION WAITING FOR YOU!



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