- Joined
- Jul 24, 2012

- Messages
- 21,511

- Thread starter ColchesterFC
- Start date

- Joined
- Jul 24, 2012

- Messages
- 21,511

I've sort of got an answer for you mate.

I sent the message to my daughter who is currently studying A level maths, her mother is a 6th form maths teacher.

Here goes...What you've posted in an expression,**you can't simplify expressions**, *you can simplify it if it is equal so something else but only then.*

So what you've done is correct, as a standalone equation so would be 4m2 + 12m and 2t-12.

You cannot simplify it however it can be factorised if that's what you mean?

They seem to think some other part of the original equation is missing which would allow you to simplify it.

Phew

I sent the message to my daughter who is currently studying A level maths, her mother is a 6th form maths teacher.

Here goes...What you've posted in an expression,

So what you've done is correct, as a standalone equation so would be 4m2 + 12m and 2t-12.

You cannot simplify it however it can be factorised if that's what you mean?

They seem to think some other part of the original equation is missing which would allow you to simplify it.

Phew

However, there are certain concepts/methods relevant to maths at any level.

In this case....

Firstly, define/reiterate appropriate terms (note small 't').

- Term (note capital 'T'): Individual component of an Expression - e.g. 2t (equivalence to 2*t already assumed)

- Expression: (As per Beezerk's reply) A mathematical statement that contains (at least) 2 Terms and (at least) 1 mathematical operator (brackets, +, -, exponent = etc).

- Equation: Special case of an Expression where the Equals (=) Operator is involved

- Distributive Property: The rules that allows bracket to be used (or not) but maintain equivalence of the 2 (before and after) Expressions.

- Like Terms: Terms that are at the same 'level'. Eg. Constants, Same level Exponentials (meanings assumed)

- Expansion. 'Removal' of brackets by using the the Distributive Property on an Expression to individual parts of the Expression

- Simplify: Remove by applying 'combining' (meaning assumed) rules about Like Terms.

- Factorise: The reverse of Expansion. Somewhat paradoxically, this (can) simplify Expressions!

So, your 1st sentence isn't quite correct. Simplifying Expanded expressions

Hope that clarifies things.

Btw. @KenL. Thanks for the use of '^' for exponentiation. Much simpler than my text - and the ** I used in IT!

Last edited:

My kids have asked me what's the point of learning maths. I told them, it's because if they ever have children, they can help them with their maths homework.

In the simplest case, they'll be able to know whether they have enough money to buy something - when they are able to do so of course! And certainly required if they want to buy a 2nd, even if of the same, item!

H'mm...I'm pretty sure there a couple of errors in their response! I too have been a high school maths teacher, though that was getting on for 40+ years ago and this sort of stuff was 'already assumed' at the level I taught.

However, there are certain concepts/methods relevant to maths at any level.

In this case....

Firstly, define/reiterate appropriate terms (note small 't').

- Term (note capital 'T'): Individual component of an Expression - e.g. 2t (equivalence to 2*t already assumed)

- Expression: (As per Beezerk's reply) A mathematical statement that contains (at least) 2 Terms and (at least) 1 mathematical operator (brackets, +, -, exponent = etc).

- Equation: Special case of an Expression where the Equals (=) Operator is involved

- Distributive Property: The rules that allows bracket to be used (or not) but maintain equivalence of the 2 (before and after) Expressions.

- Like Terms: Terms that are at the same 'level'. Eg. Constants, Same level Exponentials (meanings assumed)

- Expansion. 'Removal' of brackets by using the the Distributive Property on an Expression to individual parts of the Expression

- Simplify: Remove by applying 'combining' (meaning assumed) rules about Like Terms.

- Factorise: The reverse of Expansion. Somewhat paradoxically, this (can) simplify Expressions!

So, your 1st sentence isn't quite correct. Simplifying Expanded expressions**can** be done - though not in this case.

*Re the bit in Italics. That is simply wrong.*

Hope that clarifies things.

Btw. @KenL. Thanks for the use of '^' for exponentiation. Much simpler than my text - and the ** I used in IT!

However, there are certain concepts/methods relevant to maths at any level.

In this case....

Firstly, define/reiterate appropriate terms (note small 't').

- Term (note capital 'T'): Individual component of an Expression - e.g. 2t (equivalence to 2*t already assumed)

- Expression: (As per Beezerk's reply) A mathematical statement that contains (at least) 2 Terms and (at least) 1 mathematical operator (brackets, +, -, exponent = etc).

- Equation: Special case of an Expression where the Equals (=) Operator is involved

- Distributive Property: The rules that allows bracket to be used (or not) but maintain equivalence of the 2 (before and after) Expressions.

- Like Terms: Terms that are at the same 'level'. Eg. Constants, Same level Exponentials (meanings assumed)

- Expansion. 'Removal' of brackets by using the the Distributive Property on an Expression to individual parts of the Expression

- Simplify: Remove by applying 'combining' (meaning assumed) rules about Like Terms.

- Factorise: The reverse of Expansion. Somewhat paradoxically, this (can) simplify Expressions!

So, your 1st sentence isn't quite correct. Simplifying Expanded expressions

Hope that clarifies things.

Btw. @KenL. Thanks for the use of '^' for exponentiation. Much simpler than my text - and the ** I used in IT!

I'll know who will win though 🤕

I hate Microsoft.

They don't know when to leave good enough alone.

I'll give you my ex wife's number, you can argue it out with her.

I'll know who will win though 🤕

I'll know who will win though 🤕

I hate Microsoft.

They don't know when to leave good enough alone.

It's likely the 'translation' that's 'at fault'!

In another life my job had a car park under my control. Parking Services collected the money then handed me the income, minus the VAT. I could never make the numbers tally. Then spotted that they were using a wrong percentage calculation to knock off the VAT. Turns out I was losing £2.25 out of every hundred due. They had to give me a rebate stretching back 4 years - about £50,000. Even worse, was they were using the same calculation in reporting the VAT on the whole of the Council's parking income to HMRC. Over the years they'd overpaid on tax by several millions and were due a massive rebate. But did I get any thanks or gesture of appreciation - did I heck.

Yes. I stick with Lotus 123

That's another one I did not see coming.

I was also using Wordstar back then and could not see the demise of that either.

I had a crib book, used to sit on the train reading it morning and evening .. as the weeks went by the book got fuller. We did exam papers on those questions at the end of the week plus what we had learned the previous weeks.

I completed A level maths in 6 months following this method. So I don’t really understand why they need 2 years ? I am sure there is a justification of some sort but for me it’s always intense get the job done and then party. If it’s slow, I need lots of other things or I am going to do something else .. like golf.

However, there are certain concepts/methods relevant to maths at any level.

In this case....

Firstly, define/reiterate appropriate terms (note small 't').

- Term (note capital 'T'): Individual component of an Expression - e.g. 2t (equivalence to 2*t already assumed)

- Expression: (As per Beezerk's reply) A mathematical statement that contains (at least) 2 Terms and (at least) 1 mathematical operator (brackets, +, -, exponent = etc).

- Equation: Special case of an Expression where the Equals (=) Operator is involved

- Distributive Property: The rules that allows bracket to be used (or not) but maintain equivalence of the 2 (before and after) Expressions.

- Like Terms: Terms that are at the same 'level'. Eg. Constants, Same level Exponentials (meanings assumed)

- Expansion. 'Removal' of brackets by using the the Distributive Property on an Expression to individual parts of the Expression

- Simplify: Remove by applying 'combining' (meaning assumed) rules about Like Terms.

- Factorise: The reverse of Expansion. Somewhat paradoxically, this (can) simplify Expressions!

So, your 1st sentence isn't quite correct. Simplifying Expanded expressions

Hope that clarifies things.

Btw. @KenL. Thanks for the use of '^' for exponentiation. Much simpler than my text - and the ** I used in IT!

Has anyone actually used Algebra out of school ?

I had a crib book, used to sit on the train reading it morning and evening .. as the weeks went by the book got fuller. We did exam papers on those questions at the end of the week plus what we had learned the previous weeks.

I completed A level maths in 6 months following this method. So I don’t really understand why they need 2 years ? I am sure there is a justification of some sort but for me it’s always intense get the job done and then party. If it’s slow, I need lots of other things or I am going to do something else .. like golf.

Clear as mud. So glad you weren't my maths teacher

When I started the post I thought it would be 'simple', but setting up all the 'pre-conditions' that takes/is covered in several years of (mainly primary!) schooling seemed necessary - and, at least in your case, might have been too much info!

Btw. Proper

Btw. I got out of teaching relatively quickly. IT was/is significantly more rewarding!