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Simplifying Expressions

Date: 8/31/96 at 20:45:21
From: Al Schmeh
Subject: Simplifying Expressions

How do I simplify (y + 3) - 2(y + 7)?

Date: 9/2/96 at 13:17:2
From: Doctor Jodi
Subject: Re: Simplifying Expressions

Hi there!  Let me show you how to do a similar problem and then 
perhaps you will have an easier time with the one you sent us.

(y + 6)  - 3(y + 4)

The pieces inside the parentheses can't be simplified yet, so I will 
keep them together and multiply 3(y+4) out to get 3y +12.  Now my 
problem looks like:

(y + 6) - (3y + 12)

Now we can subtract, but we have to DISTRIBUTE the - sign like this:

(y + 6) - 3y - 12


Now I can add like terms (-3y to y and 6 to -12) to get

-2y -6

which is simplified.

Does that make sense?  Write us back if you need more help!

-Doctor Jodi,  The Math Forum
 Check out our web site!   
Associated Topics:
Middle School Algebra

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