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Multiplying Larger Degree Polynomials using Distributing - Concept

Teacher/Instructor Alissa Fong
Alissa Fong

MA, Stanford University
Teaching in the San Francisco Bay Area

Alissa is currently a teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area and Brightstorm users love her clear, concise explanations of tough concepts

Adding and subtracting rational expressions is similar to adding fractions. When adding and subtracting rational expressions, we find a common denominator and then add the numerators. To find a common denominator, factor each first. This strategy is especially important when the denominators are trinomials.

When you're multiplying polynomials you could use the area model or the table where you're drawing rectangles and finding the area that way or you can just be really careful using the distributing property, just make sure if you choose to use distributing, that you're being specially careful with the minus signs the negative signs. A lot of times the only errors student make students make when they're trying to multiply polynomials using distributing is that they lose the minus sign here or there.
Once you have each term from the first polynomial, distribute it on to each term of the second polynomial you go through and you combine like terms to find your final answer.

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