Today’s Question of the Day:

Have you ever had a problem like this?
Simplify 1 + 4 * 3 / 2 - 5

Do you ever find it confusing whether to add to multiply first? Or just don’t know where to start?

To simplify in the correct order, we use PEMDAS, which stands for:

Parentheses
Exponents
Multiplication
Division
Addition
Subtraction

Let’s go through the list and try it out!

First is Parentheses. We skip this one since there are no parentheses in our problem.

Second is Exponents. We again skip.

Third is Multiplication.
Simplify 1 + 4 * 3 / 2 - 5
We multiply 4 and 3 to get 12.

Fourth is Division.
Simplify 1 + 12 / 2 - 5
We divide 12 and 2 to get 6.

Fifth is Addition.
Simplify 1 + 6 - 5
We add 1 and 6 to get 7.

Last is Subtraction.
Simplify 7 - 5
We subtract 5 from 7 to get 2.

Wasn’t that easy?

* Side Learning *
What is the difference between an equation and an expression? The simple answer is that equations have an equal sign (“=”) and an expression does not. For example,

Equation: 1 + 3 = 4
Expression: 1 + 3

So, was the question of the day an expression or an equation?