Solving Equations

One Step Equations

Follow the Steps:

  • Your goal is to get the variable that you are solving for by itself on one side of the equation.
  • Example: x = _____

  • To eliminate a term on one side of the equation, you use the opposite mathematical operation.

  • Whatever you do to one side of the equation, you MUST do to the other side of the equation. This keeps the equation balanced!

  • Always check your answer by substituting the value back into the original equation.
  • Let's Take a Closer Look

    Solve for x in the equation: x + 3 = 7 Since I want to get x by itself, I need to remove the 3.


    x + 3 - 3 = 7 - 3 The opposite of plus threee is minus three, and whatever I do to one side, I must do the the other side. So I subtracted 3 from both sides.


    x = 4 On the left side, 3 - 3 is 0; that is how we got x by itself. On the right side 7 - 3 is 4 so x = 4.


    Always check: Substitute 4 for x in your equation. x + 3 = 7

    Since x is 4 I substitue 4 for x and my equation reads 4 + 3 = 7, 7 = 7.

    So my answer is correct.

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    Vocabulary

    equation

    inverse operations

    variable