Equations involving decimal numbers are hard to do on your fingers...

I teach equations by starting with see-saws - and you can use this strategy to discuss them with your child.

### It's all about keeping the equation balanced

Everything to the left-hand side (LHS) of the equals sign in the question becomes the LHS of the see-saw and the right-hand side (RHS) of the question is the RHS of the see-saw. Therefore, 3.2 + x = 5.7 becomes...

There are two 'people' on the LHS, and one on the RHS. We don't want two on the LHS, we just want x on its own.

If we just lift 3.2 away, however, the see-saw becomes unbalanced and the equation breaks. We can't do this so if we lift 3.2 from the LHS, we must lift 3.2 from the RHS at the same time. We will take it from the 5.7.

Taking 3.2 from 5.7 is the same as subtracting so we could re-write the above as...

When we evaluate 5.7 - 3.2 we get ...

Lastly we remember to fill in the answer on the answer line...

You may not want to be drawing see-saws on your rough work in your test (but it would be no harm if you did) so you could eventaully move towards practising this with equations only...