Rules of Subtraction

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Subtraction is a basic arithmetic operation that represents the action of removing objects from a collection. Understanding the rules of subtraction is fundamental to many everyday calculations. Here’s a guide to these rules, with examples:

Rules of Subtraction

  1. Subtracting Whole Numbers:
    • Rule: To subtract one number from another, take the value of the second number away from the first.
    • Example: If you have 10 apples and give away 3, you have 10 – 3 = 7 apples left.
  2. Order Matters:
    • Rule: Subtraction is not commutative, which means the order in which you subtract numbers matters.
    • Example: 5 – 3 is not the same as 3 – 5. While 5 – 3 = 2, 3 – 5 would result in -2.
  3. Subtracting Zero:
    • Rule: Subtracting zero from any number leaves the number unchanged.
    • Example: 7 – 0 = 7.
  4. Subtracting from Itself:
    • Rule: Subtracting a number from itself always results in zero.
    • Example: 8 – 8 = 0.
  5. Borrowing in Subtraction:
    • Rule: When subtracting one digit from another in multi-digit numbers, if the top digit is smaller than the bottom digit, you need to borrow from the next left digit.
    • Example: In 53 – 28, you need to borrow because 3 (in the ones place) is less than 8. After borrowing, it becomes 43 – 28 = 15.

Real-Life Examples

Example 1: Budgeting

  • Scenario: You start the month with $1,000 in your bank account. You pay a rent of $750.
  • Calculation: $1,000 – $750 = $250.
  • Explanation: You subtract the rent from your initial balance to find out what’s left.

Example 2: Baking

  • Scenario: A recipe needs 4 cups of sugar, but you’ve already put in 1 cup.
  • Calculation: 4 cups – 1 cup = 3 cups.
  • Explanation: You subtract the amount of sugar already used from the total required to find out how much more to add.

Example 3: Distance Travelled

  • Scenario: You’re on a road trip, and the next city is 230 miles away. You’ve already traveled 120 miles.
  • Calculation: 230 miles – 120 miles = 110 miles.
  • Explanation: Subtract the distance traveled from the total distance to find out how far you still have to go.

Example 4: Borrowing in Everyday Life

  • Scenario: You have a $50 bill and want to buy an item costing $28.
  • Calculation: $50 – $28 = $22.
  • Explanation: After paying $28, you subtract this amount from $50 to find out your change.

Example 5: Temperature Change

  • Scenario: The temperature was 15°C in the morning and dropped to 7°C at night.
  • Calculation: 15°C – 7°C = 8°C.
  • Explanation: You subtract the night temperature from the morning temperature to find out the temperature drop.

Key Takeaways

  • Subtraction is used to find the difference between numbers.
  • The order in which you subtract numbers is crucial.
  • Understanding how to borrow when subtracting multi-digit numbers is important for accurate calculations.
  • Subtraction is widely applicable in everyday scenarios like budgeting, cooking, measuring distances, and more.

By understanding these rules and practicing with real-life examples, subtraction becomes an intuitive and essential tool for everyday problem-solving.

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