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October 24, 2016

We are starting to talk about integers and variables, and algetiles are a great tool to use to help the concepts become less abstract.

We call the little red squares 1, and the little blue squares -1.  We looked at how a red square and a blue square together would cancel each other out to make zero.

When we start talking about variables, the long rectangles represent a positive and negative x.  Before long we were adding binomials: here is (2x+4)+(-3x+1).

We can simplify the expression and cancel out some of the terms by matching up pairs of zeros.

We will be using algetiles a lot over the next 2 years.

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