Lesson plan

2. Combining Like Terms to Simplify Expressions (FP)

teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Content.7.EE.A.1 http://corestandards.org/Math/Content/7/EE/A/1
teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Practice.MP7 http://corestandards.org/Math/Practice/MP7
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Lesson objective: Rewrite expressions in simplest form by combining like terms.

This lesson helps to build fluency with writing equivalent expressions. Tape diagrams are used here because they help emphasize that you can only add like terms because they are same-sized pieces. This work develops students' understanding that we can use the properties of operations to write equivalent expressions.

Students engage in Mathematical Practice 7 (Look for and make use of structure) as they simplify complicated algebraic expressions.

Key vocabulary:

  • equivalent expressions
  • like terms
  • simplest form