INTRODUCTION TO SIGNED NUMBERS AND ABSOLUTE VALUES

ADDING INTEGERS

The concept of adding integers can be shown using unit blocks on a mat. This method helps stress the idea that +1 and -1 together equal zero (cancel each other out). The visualization used for this addition example is the "Unite Sets" visualization.

SUBTRACTING INTEGERS

The concept of subtracting integers can be shown using unit blocks on a mat. This method helps stress the idea that +1 and -1 together equal zero (cancel each other out), and that "zero" can be added to any problem and it will not change the value of the final answer. The visualization used for this subtraction example is the "Take-Away" visualization. Shortcuts will not be introduced at this time (changing the signs in the problem)

ADDING AND SUBTRACTING INTEGERS ON A NUMBER LINE

Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

MULTIPLYING INTEGERS

The concept of multiplying integers can be shown using unit blocks on a 4-part mat (Algeblocks). The mat is set up in the same manner as a cartesian cooridinate system, with "+" represening the directions right and up, and "-" respresenting left and down. The final product value (+/-) is written in the quadrant for the student (this does not promote student understanding in this method). The visualization used for this multiplication example is the "array" visualization.

DIVIDING INTEGERS

The concept of dividing integers can be shown using unit blocks on a 4-part mat. The mat is set up in the same manner as a cartesian cooridinate system, with "+" represening the directions right and up, and "-" respresenting left and down. The final product value (+/-) is written in the quadrant for the student (this does not promote student understanding in this method). The visualization used for this addition example is the "array" visualization, although it is a division problem. * The array method can be used to help students factor whole numbers as well.