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Here is your cheat sheet to help you remember what to do with positive and negative numbers

(integers) when adding, subtracting, multiplying or dividing.

1. Adding Rules: SAME SIGN SUM (if they have the same sign, add the #’s together)
DIFFERENT SIGN DIFFERENCE (if different signs, find difference of #’s and
keep the sign of the # with the larger absolute value)

SAME SIGN: 5 + 4 = 9 -6 + -2 = -8
(- 7) + (- 2) = - 9

DIFFERENT SIGN (Sum of a negative and a positive number):

Think Subtraction then use the sign of the # with the larger absolute value

(-7) + 4 = -3 (-3) + 7 = 4 6 + (-9) = -3 5 + (-3) = 2

2. Subtracting Rules: REMEMBER: KEEP, CHANGE, CHANGE

Keep first number the same, Change operation to addition,


then change the second number to its Opposite value

(- 5) - 3 = -5 + (-3) = -8 4 – (-9) = 4 + (+9) = 13


5 - (-3) = 5 + 3 = 8 (-7) – 3 = (-7) + (-3) = -10
(-12) – (-8) = (-12) + (+8) = -4

(Change double negatives to a positive)


(-5) - (-3) = ( -5) + 3 = -2
(-3) - ( -5) = (-3) + 5 = 2

3. Multiplying & Dividing Rules: (If the signs are the same, the answer is positive. If the

signs are different, the answer is negative.)

Pos x Pos = Positive: 3x2=6 Pos ÷ Pos = Positive: 12 ÷ 3 = 4


Neg x Neg = Positive: (-2) x (-8) = 16 Neg ÷ Neg = Positive: (-12) ÷ (-3) = 4
Neg x Pos = Negative: (-3) x 4 = -12 Neg ÷ Pos = Negative: (-12) ÷ 3 = -4
Pos x Neg = Negative: 3 x (-4) = -12 Pos ÷ Neg = Negative: 12 ÷ (-3) = -4