The distributive property involves multiplying over grouped addition or subtraction terms. It states that you multiply the number outside of the parenthesis by each term inside of the parenthesis, and then add or subtract as in the original.

You can think of distributing as handing out, or giving something out. You’re giving out the number on the outside of the parenthesis to the numbers on the inside of the parenthesis.

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We’re going to look at two examples. One with addition, and one with subtraction.

If we were doing 2(5+3), then we could use the distributive property to simplify this by distributing the 2 to the 5, 2(5)+2(3). Then we would simplify. According to PEMDAS, we need to multiply first. So, 2(5) is 10, plus 2(3) is 6. Finally, we combine 10+6 for 16.

Let’s look at the subtraction problem. If we wanted to simplify 4(5-2), we would start by multiplying 4(5)-4(2).

And then we would simplify. Following the order of operations, we’re going to multiply first. 4(5) is 20, minus 4(2) is 8. And 20-8 is 12.

**The next lesson: Review and Practice Test**

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