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Multiplying Positive And Negative Numbers

 

When you have finished this page, try the Multiplying Positive and Negative Numbers Quiz.

The multiplication of positive and negative numbers has certain rules depending on the equation. Let's take a look at an example with positive numbers and the number line. You notice that the ball goes from the starting point zero to five, then ten, then fifteen as five times three is fifteen.

5 time 3 equals 15

In this example, negative five is multiplied by three. Notice that this time the ball goes to the left five, then ten, then fifteen. A negative five times three or three times a negative five is a negative fifteen.

 

-5 times 3 equals -15 animation

 

The next case is a bit trickier to understand. A negative five is multiplied by a negative three with an answer of a positive fifteen. This is because each time the negative five is multiplied by another negative number, it is as such changing the negative to a positive - taking away each time a negative and changing the number to a positive.

-5 times -3 equals 15 animation

 

Algebra Main Page Positive & Negative Numbers Addition & Subtraction of Positive & Negative Numbers Multiplication of Positive & Negative Numbers Division of Positive & Negative Numbers Order of Operations
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