# Parentheses: How big of a change can they make!?

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Once students understand the order of operations, they often just get stuck doing increasingly difficult practice problems. That's a sure-fire way to squelch learning, though. Here, students determine where to place parentheses to make the greatest change in an expression.

### Objective

Students will add sets of parentheses to expressions to see how large of a change they can create.

### Steps

1. First, I model the process and then give them a sample to try: 7 × 3 + 7 × 2
2. I show my best answer (see below) and then present four more samples (available here as a printout)
3. I reveal my best answers, then ask students to think about what patterns or rules they spotted to help them place their parentheses. They write these out as 3 to 5 tips to create a guidebook.

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