# Verbal Phrases to Algebraic Expressions

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1 Student Name: Date: Contact Person Name: Phone Number: Lesson 13 Verbal Phrases to s Objectives Translate verbal phrases into algebraic expressions Solve word problems by translating sentences into equations

2 Authors: Jason March, B.A. Tim Wilson, B.A. Editor: Graphics: Linda Shanks Tim Wilson Jason March Eva McKendry National PASS Center BOCES Geneseo Migrant Center 7 Lackawanna Avenue Mount Morris, NY (585) (585) (fax) Developed by the National PASS Center under the leadership of the National PASS Coordinating Committee with funding from the Region 0 Education Service Center, San Antonio, Texas, as part of the Mathematics Achievement = Success (MAS) Migrant Education Program Consortium Incentive project. In addition, program support from the Opportunities for Success for Out-of-School Youth (OSY) Migrant Education Program Consortium Incentive project under the leadership of the Kansas Migrant Education Program.

3 One day, you and your family were telling each other different riddles. Your cousin Jesús offers you the following riddle: : Five years ago, I was half the age I will be in eight years. How old am I now? In the last two lessons, we discussed variables and a how to solve equations for a given variable. In this lesson, we will apply these processes to solve word problems,, like the one posed above. In order to accomplish this, we must determine words and phrases that are commonly used to represent an algebraic expression. Algebraic expressions are made up of constants and variables connected by arithmetic operations. These operations include addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The following are examples of algebraic expressions. Constant(s) Variable(s) 3x 3 x 5y 6 5 and 6 y ( 3s + 1) 4 3, 1, and 4 s 7(4b + c ) 7, 4, and b and c 4x 3y 4 and 3 x and y In each of these algebraic expressions, we see that the constants and the variables are all attached by arithmetic operations.. So, we need to find out which phrases are used to stand for different operations.. Then, we can represent a verbal phrase as an algebraic expression. First and foremost, it is important to remember that a variable is used to represent an unknown value. In some cases, a phrase or sentence will tell us which variable we should use to represent the unknown value. However, it is more common for the reader to create the variable using a let statement. Math On the Move Lesson 13 1

4 A let statement is used to help solve a word problem by creating a variable to represent the unknown value in the word problem. For example, Let x = the unknown number. Now that we know how to write a let statement, we can write one for the word problem at the beginning of the lesson. We do not know Cousin Jesus age, so we will use a variable to represent this number. Let a = Cousin Jesus age now Now that we have created a variable for our word problem, it is time to figure out which phrases mean the different operations. The following expressions all imply addition. Let n represent the unknown number. Key Words plus added to increased by more than sum total Word Expression 6 plus a number 6 + n a number added to n a number increased by 6 n more than a number n + 6 the sum of 6 and a number 6 + n the total of 6 and a number 6 + n The following expressions all imply subtraction. Let n represent the unknown number. The Commutative Property of Addition ion states that 6 plus a number and a number plus 6 represent the same values. 6 + n = n + 6. Math On the Move

5 Key Words minus diminished by decreased by subtracted from* less than* Word Expression 5 minus a number 5 n a number minus 5 n 5 a number diminished by 5 n 5 5 diminished by a number 5 n a number decreased by 5 n 5 5 decreased by a number 5 n 5 subtracted from a number n 5 a number subtracted from 5 5 n 5 less than a number n 5 a number less than 5 5 n *Notice that with these two key words, the order we subtract the numbers is the reverse of the order we read them in. For example, 10 less than a number means n 10. We write the number 10 second even though it comes first in the phrase. Think Back Five minus a number and a number minus 5 are not equivalent. There is no Commutative Property for subtraction since 5 7 and 7 5 are not equivalent. Remember that 5 7 = and 7 5 = +. Similarly, 5 n and n 5 are not equivalent. Expressions must be translated from English to algebraic form exactly. It is very important to write the algebraic expression in the correct order. Pay close attention if you see a key word that means subtraction.. Try translating the following phrases on your own. Math On the Move Lesson 13 3

6 1. Underline the key words in each expression, and then write the algebraic expression implied by each phrase below. Let n = the number. Word Expression a. A number subtracted from 15 b. 17 more than a number c. A number increased by 1 d. A number decreased by 1 e. The sum of a number and 8 f. 15 less than a number Let s look at some expressions that imply multiplication. This time, let x represent the unknown number. Key Words times multiplied by product twice double Word Expression 4 times a number a number multiplied by 4 the product of 4 and a number twice a number double a number 4x 4x 4x x x triple of triple a number 3x 3 of a number 3 x Math On the Move 4

7 Multiplication is commutative. Remember 3 4 = 4 3. However, when writing algebraic expressions, the constant is always written first. We write 4x rather than x 4. Therefore a number multiplied by 4 is written 4x instead of x 4. As you can see, there are key words in multiplication that are used for specific numbers. times a number can be written as twice a number or double a number.. 3 times a number can be written as triple a number. The last operation we need to look at is division. The following expressions all imply division. Let a represent the unknown number this time. Key Words Word Expression Quotient divided by the quotient of 7 and a number the quotient of a number and 7 7 a number divided by divided by a number 7 a a a 7 a Think Back Division is not commutative. 3. Likewise 7 3 a a 7. Notice that we now longer use the division symbol. Math On the Move Lesson 13 5

8 . Underline the key words in each phrase. Then, translate the following expressions into algebraic expressions. Word Expression a. four less than a number b b. six more than a number r c. the quotient of eleven and a number t Word Expression d. three-fifths of a number y e. a number z times eleven f. six less than a number x Now that we have had some practice translating these verbal sentences, let s start relating them to real life situations. Example Translate the number of o f cents in a given number of quarters. Solution One quarter is 5 cents. There are ( ) There are ( 5 3) cents in three quarters. 5 cents in two quarters. If we let q equal the unknown number of quarters, then the number r of cents in q quarters is 5q. Math On the Move 6

9 3. Translate the following word expressions into algebraic expressions. Word Expression a. the number of cents in d dimes b. the number of cents in n nickels c. the number of cents in x dollars As we learned in Lesson L 3, 3 the order of operations is very important. So, when we translate a word expression into an algebraic expression, it is very important to preserve the order of operations. Algebraic expressions must be written and interpreted carefully, so that everyone understands the same meaning. The algebraic expression, 3( x + ), is not equivalent to the algebraic expression, 3x +. The algebraic expressions on the right represent the word expressions on o the left. The variable n will be used to hold the place of the unknown number. Word Expression three times a number 3n five more than three times a number 3n + 5 three times the sum of a number and a five 3( n + 5) In the second expression, 3n + 5, the number is first multiplied by three; ; thent hen, that product is added to five. In the third expression, 3( n + 5), the sum is found first; then, the sum is multiplied ied by three. The word sum is underlined, because it often means we group the addition in parentheses. The word difference is also important, because it often means we group the subtraction in parentheses. Try these practice problems on your own. Math On the Move Lesson 13 7

10 4. Translate each word expression below into an algebraic expression. Word Expression a) the difference of 9 and twice a number n b) twice the difference of 9 and a number n c) twice the difference of a number n and 9 d) Rosa s age in x years if she is 15 now Now that we have worked on translating phrases into algebraic expressions, we need to complete the mathematical sentence in order to create an algebraic equation. An algebraic equation has an algebraic expression set equal to a number or another expression. The following are examples of algebraic equations: a 3x + = 7 3n 7 = 4n + 5 = 10a 8 5 The key word for translating complete sentences into an equation is the word is is. All forms of the word is is represent the equal sign in an equation. Let s look at the word problem at the beginning of this lesson. Five years ago, I was half the age I will be in eight years. How old am I now? Let a = Jesus age now Math On the Move 8

11 As we can see, the word is is not in the word problem,, but the word was is the past tense of the word is. So, we will double underline the word was, because that is where the equals sign goes. Five years ago, I was half the age I will be in eight years. How old am I now? Let a = Jesus age now Now we must find the key words that represent operations and numbers. There are no key words in this problem that match the ones given to us already. This problem is written with respect to Jesus age now. a 5 1 a + 8 Five years ago I was half the age I will be in eight years.. How old am I now? Let a = Jesus age now If Jesus is 10 years old now, he would have been 10 5 = 5 years old 5 years ago. Since we used a to represent his age now, his age 5 years ago would be represented by a 5. Similar to this, his age in 8 years would be a + 8. Lastly, the word half simply means 1. However,, we must multiply his age in 8 years by 1, because the word half is the same as saying half of. So, now we will write this sentence as an algebraic equation. Five years ago I was half the age I will be in eight years. How old am I now? a 1 5 = + 8 ( a ) You may be wondering why we put the parentheses around the a + 8. If we didn t, it would not mean the same thing. Math On the Move Lesson 13 9

12 1 ( 8) a + means that we multiply his age in 8 years by means that we multiply his age in 8 years by a + means we multiply his age now by means we multiply his age now by 1, then add 8 years to that. So, the parentheses are required to make the statement correct. Now, we can try to solve the equation. a 1 5 = + 8 ( a ) This is the first time we have seen parentheses in an equation. To solve this problem, we must get rid of the parentheses using the distributive property. Given numbers a, b, and c, if we have a( b + c), the distributive property states that we can multiply a into the parentheses if we multiply it by everything that is being added inside the parentheses. a( b + c) = ab + ac ( k + 3) = k + 6 So, we must distribute the 1 into the parentheses. a a a 1 5 = ( a + 8) Now we can start to solve the equation for a 5 = a = a = a + 4 Now we can start to solve the equation for a. 1 a 1 a 5 = a According to our work, a = 18. This means that Jesus is 18 years old. Math On the Move 1 a a = = 18 10

13 The last thing that we need to do is check our answer using the word problem. If Jesus is 18 now, he was 13 five years ago, and he will be 6 in eight years. Five years ago I was half the age I will be in eight years.. How old am I now? 13 = = 6 13 = 13 6 So, we can see that our answer of 18 works. When working with real-life life example, evaluate your answer using common sense. If you ended with a negative number for an age, go back and look at your algebraic computations. If you haven t made any mistakes there, you may have translated the algebraic expression incorrectly. Let s try one more together. Example Five more than twice a number is three times the difference of that number and two. What is the number? Solution First, we need to create a let statement for our unknown value. Let n = the number Next, we will underline all the key words in the sentence. Make sure you double underline the word is, because that is where the equal sign goes. Five more than twice a number is three times the difference of that number and two. What is the number? Math On the Move Lesson 13 11

14 More than means addition. More specifically, five more than means we add 5 to something. Twice a number is times the variable. So, five more than twice a number is the same as n + 5. Three times means we multiply something by 3. Difference Difference means subtraction. More specifically, the difference of that t number and two means we group the subtraction of the variable and. So, three times the difference of that number and two is the same as 3( n ). Since those two phrases were separated by the word is, we set them equal to each other. ( n ) n + 5 = 3 Now we can start to solve the equation. ( n ) n + 5 = 3 n + 5 = 3n 6 -n -n 5 = n = n So, the number is 11. Let s check our answer. Twice the number is, and five more than that is 7. The difference of the number and two is 9, and three times that is 7. Since 7 = 7, we know the number 11 is the correct answer. Notice that when we check ck our answer, we check it using the written statement instead of the algebraic equation we translated. If we translated our algebraic equation wrong, the answer we get Math On the Move 1

15 is wrong, but when we check it, it seems right. Therefore, we must check our answer by b using the original written statement. 5.. Translate the following sentences into equations, and solve. (Make sure you write a let statement) a. Twice the sum of four and a number is six less than that same number. What is the number? b. Three years y from now, Alejandra will be triple her age from seven years ago. How old is Alejandra? When we solve word problems, we often have to write multiple let statements Example Three consecutive integers sum to 99.. What are the three numbers? Solution Before we can start to solve this, we need to understand what consecutive integers are. Consecutive integers are integers that come right after another on the number line. The following are examples of consecutive integers. {1,, 3, 3, 4, 5} 5 {13, 14,, 15, 16} {-11, -10, -9} Math On the Move Lesson 13 13

16 As you can see, consecutive integers increase by one each time. But for our problem, the three consecutive integers are unknown. So, we will use a variable to represent the first number. Math On the Move Let x = the first integer If we use x as the first integer, then the second integer should be 1 more than that. Also, the third integer should be more than the first one. So, the following let statements can be used to represent our three numbers. Let x = the first integer x + 1 = the second integer x + = the third integer Now we have a variable representation of our three consecutive integers. The next thing it tells us is that the sum of the three numbers is 99. So, we add our three integers and set that equal to 99. ( ) ( ) x + x x + = 99 We can get rid of the parentheses because there is no number that needs to be distributed through them. Combine like terms Solve the equation for the variable x + x x + = 99 3x + 3 = 99 3x + 3 = x = 96 x We have found x.. But wait! We are not done. The question asked us to find the three numbers, and we only found one number. To find the other numbers, we need to look back at the let statements = 3

17 Let x = the first integer = 3 x + 1 = the t second integer = 33 x + = the third integer = 34 If x = 3 is the first integer, then the second integer is 1 more than that, x + 1 = 33. The third integer is more than the first integer x + = 34. If f we check it, = 99 Let s try one that is a little harder. Example Isabela has \$.55 in quarters, nickels, and dimes. She has twice as many nickels as dimes and one less quarter than nickels. Solution Our first step is to write the let statements. When writing the let statements, we w need to find what our unknown values are. In this problem, we do not know how many quarters, nickels and dimes we have. We first need to figure out which of the coins we know the least about. If we focus on the second sentence of the word problem, we are told how many nickels we have in terms t of dimes and how many quarters we have in terms of nickels. But, we are not told how many dimes we have, so we will let the variable d represent the number of dimes we have. Let d = number of dimes Since we were e told that there are twice as many nickels as dimes, we can write the following let statement. Let d = number of nickels *If d is the number of dimes, then d is two times as many dimes.* Math On the Move Lesson 13 15

18 Now that we have this let statement, we can write our let statement ent for quarters. We were told that there is one less quarter than nickels, so we can write the following let statement. Let d 1 = number of quarters *If d is the number of nickels, then d 1 is one less than the number of nickels.* Now that we have our three let statements, we can translate the word problem into an algebraic equation. To do this problem, we must look back to a problem we did earlier. If all of the coins add up to \$.55, we know that there are 55 cents in that amount of money. So, we need to add up the number of cents in each of our coins, and set it equal to our total number of cents. If there are d dimes, then we have 10d cents from our dimes. If there are d nickels, then we have 5 d cents from our nickels. n If there are d 1 quarters, then nickels, then we have ( ) we have 5( 1) should equal 55. d cents from our quarters. If we add up the total number of cents, it Let d = number of dimes d = number of nickels d 1 = number of quarters ( ) ( ) 10d + 5 d + 5 d 1 = 55 Distribute through the parentheses. 10d + 10d + 50d 5 = 55 The 5, 10,, and 5 are the values of each coin in cents. Combine similar terms. Solve and check. Math On the Move 16

19 70d 5 = d = d = 4 d = number of dimes = 4 d = number of nickels = 8 d 1 = number of quarters = 7 Check: 4 dimes, plus 8 nickels, plus 7 quarters is ( ) ( ) ( ) = Try getting some practice on your own = Solve the following word problems. Then check to see if they are correct. a. Three consecutive integers sum to 13. What are the three integers? Math On the Move Lesson 13 17

20 b. Jada goes to the store and buys two CD s. The CD s come to \$18.95, and she gives the cashier \$0. She got her change back in quarters and nickels. If she got back twice as many nickels as quarters, how many quarters and nickels did she get back? Review 1. Highlight the following definitions a. algebra lgebraic expression b. let statement c. algebraic equation d. distributive property e. consecutive integers. Highlight the think back boxes. 3. Highlight the fact boxes. Math On the Move 18

21 4. Write one question you would like to ask your mentor, or one new thing you learned in this lesson. Practice Problems Math On the Move Lesson 13 Directions: Write your answers in your math journal. Label this exercise Math On the Move Lesson 13, Set A and a Set B. Set A 1. Translate each word expression into an algebraic expression. Use b to represent the unknown number. a. seven times a number b. nine more than a number c. three less than a number d. three minus a number. Translate the following word expressions into algebraic expressions. a. Yolanda s age three years from now if her current age is a b. four more cents than q quarters c. the area of x tiles if each tile has an area of 144 square inches d. eight less than twice a number n e. six times the sum of a number n and 15 Set B 1. What is the difference between an algebraic expression and an algebraic equation? Math On the Move Lesson 13 19

22 . Juan s father is 5 times as old as Juan, and Juan is twice as old as his sister Anita. In two years, the sum of their ages will be 58. How old is Juan, Anita, and their father? 3. Savannah went to the grocery store and bought bananas. The total came to \$ , and she handed the clerk a 5-dollar 5 bill. The clerk gave Savannah five coins back (in( quarters and dimes). How much change did Savannah get back, and how many quarters and dimes did she have? ( Hint: (Hint : If x = the t number of quarters, what is 5 x?) 1. Word Expression a. A number subtracted from n b. 17 more than a number n + 17 c. A number increased by 1 n + 1 d. A number decreased by 1 n 1 e. The sum of a number and n + 8 f. 15 less than a number n 15. Word Expression a. four less than a number b b 4 b. six more than a number r r + 6 c. the quotient of eleven and a number t d. three-fifths of a number y 11 t 3 5 y e. a number z times 11 11z f. six less than a number x x 6 3. a) 10d b) 5 5n c) 100x Math On the Move 0

23 4. Word Expression a. the difference of 9 and twice a number n 9 n twice the difference of 9 and a number n ( 9 n) b. twice the difference of 9 and a number c. twice the difference of a number n and 9 and 9 ( n 9) d. Rosa s age in x years if she is now x 5a. Twice the sum of four and a number is six less than that same number. What is the number? Let x = the number ( x) 4 + = x x = x 6 -x -x 8 + x = x = 14 b. Three years from now,, Alejandra will be triple her age from seven years ago.. How old is Alejandra? Let k = Alejandra s age k ( k ) + 3 = 3 7 k + 3 = 3k 1 -k -k 3 = k = k 1 = k 6a. Three consecutive integers sum to 13. What are the three integers? Math On the Move Lesson 13 1

24 Let x = 1 st number = 40 x + 1 = nd number = 41 x + = 3 rd number = 4 ( ) ( ) x + x x + = 13 x + x x + = 13 3x + 3 = x = x = 40 b. Jada goes to the store and buys two CD s. The CD s come to \$18.95, and she gives the cashier \$0. She got her change back in quarters and nickels. If she got back twice as many nickels as quarters, how many quarters and nickels did she get back? Let q = quarters = 3 q = nickels = cents in a quarter cents in a nickel cents in \$1.05 Jada got back 3 quarters and 6 nickels ( q) 5q + 5 = 105 5q + 10q = q = q = 3 End of Lesson 13 Math On the Move

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