# Algebra is great fun - you get to solve puzzles!

May 29th, 2015
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A Puzzle-What is the missing number? - 2 = 4 OK, the answer is 6, right? Because 6 - 2 = 4. Easy stuff. Well, in Algebra we don't use blank boxes, we use a letter (usually an x or y, but any letter is fine). So we would write:

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Introduction to AlgebraVariables Expressions Equations Solution of an equation Simplifying equations Combining like terms Simplifying with addition and subtraction Simplifying by multiplication Simplifying by division Word problems as equations Sequences Math Contests School League Competitions Contest Problem Books Variables A variable is a symbol that represents a number. Usually we use letters such as n, t, or x for variables. For example, we might say that s stands for the side-length of a square. We now treat s as if it were a number we could use. The perimeter of the square is given by 4 s. The area of the square is given by s s. When working with variables, it can be helpful to use a letter that will remind you of what the variable stands for: let n be the number of people in a movie theater; let t be the time it takes to travel somewhere; let d be the distance from my house to the park. Expressions :An expression is a mathematical term or a sum or difference of mathematical terms that may use numbers, variables, or both. Example: The following are examples of expressions: 2 x 3 + 7 2 y + 5 2 + 6 (4 - 2) z + 3 (8 - z) Example: Roland weighs 70 kilograms, and Mark weighs k kilograms. Write an expression for their combined weight. The combined weight in kilograms of these two people is the sum of their weights, which is 70 + k. Example: A car travels down the freeway at 55 kilometers per hour. Write an exp

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