Explain Combining Negative Signs in integers?
You've learned about positive and negative integers.
BASICS : When you place a negative sign in front of an integer, you get the opposite of that integer. On a number line, an integer and its opposite are the same distance from the origin, 0, but on opposite sides of the origin.
Just when you thought you were safe, and assumed a number was clearly either positive or negative, consider this.
What do you think happens when you place a negative sign in front of a negative number?
For example, what is the value of - (-2)?
Is this a negative integer?
Or, knowing what you do about negative signs, can you simplify it so that it is clearly a positive or negative integer?
The opposite of -2 is the integer on the number line that appears on the opposite side of the origin from -2 at the same distance from the origin.
We see: - (-2) = 2.
Here's some practice for you.You've probably heard the expression "Two negatives make a positive."
Now, you see that a number with two negative signs is positive.
In algebra, you may have even more than two negative signs in front of a positive integer.
Each negative sign says take the opposite of the number.
See if you can simplify the following to a positive or negative integer: - [- (- -4)]
When you use multiple negative signs in front of a positive number, it doesn't matter what grouping symbols appear.
See if you agree that - [- (- -4)] = - -(- -4) = - - - -4 = 4
Just from the number of negative signs in front of an integer, can you tell if the integer is positive or negative?