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Converting to an Equation


Date: 06/13/99 at 18:26:36
From: Rose Timberlake
Subject: How do I make a word problem into an equation?

I don't quite remember how to turn this into an equation.

The square of a number is 96 more than 10 times the number. Find the 
number.

I know that you have to write n^2, but I don't know where to go from 
there.


Date: 06/14/99 at 08:49:22
From: Doctor Rick
Subject: Re: How do I make a word problem into an equation?

Hi, Rose.

You have the left side of the equation. "The square of a number is 
..." can be written as

   n^2 = ...

Now for the other side, start with "the number," which is the same 
number as on the left side, so you use the same variable n. "10 times 
the number" is 10n. "96 more than 10 times the number" is therefore 96 
added to this, or 10n + 96.

In this case there is pretty much a word-for-word translation:

  The square of a number is 96 more than 10 times the number.
  \____________________/ \/ \/ \_______/ \/ \___/ \________/
          n^2            =  96     +     10   *       n

This will not always be the case; in all cases you need to think about 
the meaning of the words and not just follow a translation formula.

You're on your own now to solve the quadratic equation.

- Doctor Rick, The Math Forum
  http://mathforum.org/dr.math/   
    
Associated Topics:
Middle School Algebra
Middle School Word Problems

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