# MARS: algebra: expressions

This collection features eight resources on the topic of expressions.

The resources feature:

• Concept development lessons that focus on developing conceptual understanding of significant mathematical ideas.
• Problem solving lessons that focus on the application of previously learned mathematics to non-routine unstructured problems.
• Tasks that provide mathematically rich problems that come with work for students to peer assess.

The Mathematics Assessment Resource Service (MARS) is a collaboration between the University of California at Berkeley and the Shell Centre team at the University of Nottingham, with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The team is known around the world for its innovative work in maths education.

## Resources

### Evaluating statements: consecutive sums

This resource requires problem solving using skills in forming and factorising expressions.

Students investigate the sum of four consecutive numbers. Initially this is done using numerical examples. There are a series of statements for students to classify as ‘sometimes true’, ‘always true’, or ‘never true...

### Expressions and equations

This resource features ten short tasks relating to expressions and equations.

An example gives a series of expressions and poses the question as to which has the greatest value when a negative number is substituted.

This task is from the Mathematics Assessment Resource Service, a collaboration between...

### How old are they?

This resource consists of four short tasks.

Students begin by writing expressions about the individual ages of three people using information from the task. Additional information is then given about the total age of the three people and the task is to find out how old each person is. A final task involves...

### Generalizing patterns: the difference of two squares

This resource requires problem solving using skills in forming and factorising expressions.

Students begin by working out numerical examples where a number can be written as the difference of two square numbers. They need to choose systematic ways to collect and organise data, and examine it for patterns....