# Operations - Specific Instructions of Math

As you learn about arithmetic, you will be introduced to the core operations of math. You will learn the rules attached to each operation and what you should do when they are found together. An**operation**is an action that you complete when you compare two numbers. You know that if you see a plus sign (+), it is time to add. A minus sign (-) means it's time to subtract. Sometimes you will need to solve problems with different types of signs. Look for the specific symbols and do each operation separately. In math, there is a specific order for completing those operations. You can't just do what you want. You need to follow the rules in order to get the correct answer.

# Leading to Answers

Remember that these**processes**are in place so that math works the same way for everyone and every time someone solves a math problem. Math wouldn't work if two people were given the same problem and they got different answers. Math relies on

**logical arguments**and procedures to work properly. When you follow the correct steps, you will always get the right answer.

**Example:**

3 + 5 x 2 = ?

Wrong way:

(1) 3 + 5 = 8

(2) 8 x 2 = 16

Right way:

Step 1: 5 x 2 = 10 (the rules say you have to multiply first)

Step 2: 3 + 10 = 13

Why? As you are about to learn, you always do multiplication before you do any addition. It's all about the order. This problem would have been a lot easier if you had seen parentheses. They can help you figure out the order and the correct steps to solve the problem. You always solve the problems inside of the parentheses first. The above example would look like this:

3 + (5 x 2) = 3 + 10 = ?

# Useful Reference Materials

**Wikipedia:**

*https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arithmetic*

**Encyclopædia Britannica:**

*http://www.britannica.com/topic/arithmetic*

**Encyclopedia.com:**

*http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/arithmetic.aspx*