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Do the following sentences express 5-2?

a. 5 fewer 2 is 3
b. 2 fewer than 5 is 3
c. 5 less 2 is 3
d. 5 gave 2 is 3

I also saw online that "shared" can also mean "minus", can someone please give me an example?

Thank you!

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I would say only b, c are acceptable in the US. $\endgroup$ – Gerald Edgar Aug 10 '17 at 0:31
  • $\begingroup$ (a) and (d) sound ungrammatical. Maybe there's some dialect I'm not familiar with where "5 fewer 2" or "5 gave 2" are standard, but they don't sound right to me, and I'd be confused if I saw them without context. $\endgroup$ – Daniel Hast Aug 11 '17 at 20:07
  • $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it seems to be about certain English vocabulary / grammar, albeit applied to a mathematical concept. $\endgroup$ – Brendan W. Sullivan Aug 14 '17 at 23:02
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    $\begingroup$ @brendansullivan07 I think it's about mathematical language and it's very important to use them correctly in class. $\endgroup$ – EmmaXL Aug 15 '17 at 8:24
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From your list

a) 5 fewer 2 is 3 is never used

b) 2 fewer than 5 is 3 is used

C) 5 less 2 is 3 Can be used but a better usage is 2 less than 5 is 3

d) 5 gave 2 is 3 Should be rewritten as 5 gave 2 leaves 3

Additional items (not all are action words - verbs)

e) 2 units (shorter/slower/lighter) than 5 units is 3 units

f) How many units (longer/faster/heaver) than 2 units is 5 units? It is 3 units longer

g) Bob has 5 apples and shares 1 with each of his 2 sisters. He has 3 apples left.

h) Bob has 5 apples. Lisa has 2 apples. Lisa has 3 fewer apples than Bob.

i) The difference of/between 5 and 2 is 3

j) Subtract 2 from 5 and the answer is 3

k) 5 minus 2 is 3

l) Bob has 5 apples and eats 2. There are 3 remaining apples. OR There are 3 left. OR There 3 apples left over

m) 5 decreased by 2 is 3.

For more words you can search for

Arithmetic subtraction key words

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