How to Convert Sentences to Mathematical Equations


A mathematical equation is a sentence that can contain numerals, operational symbols, and variables. The expression becomes an equation with the inclusion of an equal sign. Written mathematical sentences can be converted to equations by analyzing the problem situation and using the appropriate symbols to represent different components of the problem.

  • Learn the symbols that represent different mathematical verbal (written) phrases. For example, the words "is" and "has" usually imply "equals," which is represented by the symbol =. "Twice" means "multiply by two," or x 2.

  • Extract and rewrite the relevant information in a manner that makes sense to you. For example, if the problem says: "Jade has twice as many apples as Tracy. Write a mathematical equation that illustrates the relationship of Jade's apples to Tracy's." Write: Jade has 2* Tracy

  • Write the mathematical symbols that represent the words, operations, and numerals in the problem underneath the key information. For example write J = 2 x T, where J represents the number of apples Jade has and T represents the number of apples Tracy has.

  • Study the words that indicate addition: increased by, combined, together, more than, and,

    total, sum, and add

  • Study the words that indicate subtraction: minus, less than, fewer, decreased by, and difference.

  • Study the words that indicate division: per, ratio, quotient, and out of.


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