How to Represent a Sentence Using an Equation

By Marija Kero

Representing a sentence using an equation is also known as a word problem. Represent a sentence using an equation with help from an experienced mathematics professional in this free video clip.

Transcript

Hi, my name is Marija, and today I'm going to show you how to represent a sentence using an equation. So, if we have a sentence like 10 is four less than double a number. And I'm just going to write the number sign to make it shorter. What we have to do is look out for our keyword. So, we recognize that the word is a keyword that stands for equals, less than means subtraction and double means to multiply something by two. So, these are our keywords. The other important thing in this specific sentence is that whenever you see the word less than, whatever comes after it actually has to go first in your Algebraic sentence because you're subtracting from whatever came after this. So, now we're going to start translating. Ten is a number, so it's just going to remain a number when write an equation. The word is is going to translate into an equal sign. Now again, what I just said with less than, since we're subtracting from this, that's going to come first. Double a number means two times something and since we don't know what this number is, we're going to write a variable for it. So, two x is how we're going to represent double a number. And now we're doing four less than that, so we're taking four away from the two x. So, we translate it; 10 is four less than double a number into 10 equals two x minus four. And that is how you represent a sentence with an equation.

About the Author

Marija Kero graduated from the Pforzheimer Honors College at Pace University with a Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics and Adolescent Education.