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Intro to negative numbers

Learn what negative numbers are and how to plot them on the number line.
Here's a number line that should look very familiar. It starts at 0, then counts up by 1 from there:
We know that if we were to keep going to the right, we would have 11, then 12, and so on.
What happens if we keep going to the left of 0 though? We get negative numbers! To the left of 0 is minus, 1, then minus, 2, then minus, 3, and so on:

Let's practice!

Problem 1A
  • Current
Move the dot to minus, 4.

Why do we need negative numbers?

Negative numbers help us describe values less than zero.


When the temperature is 8, degrees below 0, degrees, it is less than 0. We can say the temperature is minus, 8, degrees.

A few more negative situations

Problem 2A
  • Current
A bank uses positive numbers to represent deposits and negative numbers to represent withdrawals.
How would a bank represent a withdrawal of 19, point, 43 dollars?
Choose 1 answer:

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