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An expression is a combination of numbers, variables, and mathematical operations that can be simplified or evaluated to produce a numerical value.
Simplifying an expression involves combining like terms, using the order of operations, and applying mathematical properties to make the expression more concise. Evaluating an expression involves plugging in specific values for the variables and solving the expression to get a numerical result.
To simplify an expression, start by combining like terms (terms with the same variables and exponents). Then, use the order of operations (PEMDAS) to simplify any remaining terms. Finally, apply any applicable mathematical properties, such as the distributive property, to further simplify the expression.
To evaluate an expression, substitute the given values for the variables in the expression. Then, use the order of operations (PEMDAS) to solve the expression and get a numerical result.
Some common mistakes to avoid when evaluating/simplifying an expression include forgetting to apply the order of operations, not distributing correctly, and making errors when combining like terms. It is also important to pay attention to the signs of the terms and use proper notation when writing out the simplified expression.