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Algebraic Terms

Learning algebra in third grade involves studying the rules of operations and gaining a better understanding of what symbols represent. Third graders will also learn new third grade math terms and practice those that they have already learned.

Students will use equations. An equation is a mathematical statement that shows the equality of two expressions. What exactly does that mean? You need an equal sign for one thing. Here’s an example of an algebraic equation or what is also called a number sentence: 5+4=9. Students might be asked to find unknown quantities in an equation. For example, 3+__=8 or 10-___=7.

In third grade math, students will also learn the algebraic terms for various properties. The commutative property tells us that we can change the order of numbers in addition and multiplication and still get the same answer. For example, 2+1 is the same as 1+2 and the sum of both is 3. The associative property tells us that we can change the grouping of numbers in addition and multiplication and it will not change the sum or the product. For example, let’s say we have 15 cupcakes. We can group them as three groups of five or five groups of three. There are still 15 cupcakes.