Integers are negative and positive numbers. You can use terms as "have" and "owe" instead of saying positive and negative, think of it money wise. When adding integers you would say "and" instead of saying plus and when subtracting integers you would say "remove" instead of subtract. I'm going to be explaining 2 different questions for subtracting integers.

The first question is (-5) - (-4) =

As a sentence:

__owe 5 remove owe 4 =__

To answer this question there's a little rhyme for it "To subtract what isn't there, you must add a zero pair" so that's what you need to do. To make a zero pair you need to add 4 positives to -4 because -4 and +4 equal 0, that's how you make zero pairs (add the opposite integer). Once you made your zero pair, you get rid of your negative numbers. So in this case you'll get rid of the -4 and you'll have +4 left over. (You always convert your second number the zero pair). Once you have your number, you're going to subtract the first number (-5) to the number you now have after making your zero pair (+4).

For this question, the answer will be -1.

The second question is: 1 - (-2) =

As a sentence:

__have 1 remove owe 2 =__

Once again you need to make zero pairs to the second number.So you add +2 to -2 and that makes zero, which is a zero pair. Now you remove -2 because you have +2 now. Once you're done that, you remove your new answer which is +2 from 1 (when there's no symbol in front of the number it's a positive).

For this answer your answer will be 3 or +3.

YouTube Video

1:39 - 3:31 (zero pairs)

Integer game link:

http://www.xpmath.com/forums/arcade.php?do=play&gameid=49

I like how you explained what "have", "owe, "and" and "remove" stood for when using integers. I also completely understood your explanation about zero pairs, although your picture was a bit confusing because of the messiness. I still understood what you were trying to explain. Great job and keep it up! ;)

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