A person should combine terms on either side of the equation before trying to solve. For example, if the equation is 2x + 4x = 24x, 2x and 4x should be added together before going any further. This makes the equation 6x = 24x. Isolating terms that contain variables involves getting the variable to one side of the equation. If the equation reads 2 + y = 46, y must stand alone on one side. The 2 must be subtracted from both sides so that the equation reads y = 44.

In some instances, the variable must be isolated, 6 = x/3 for example. Here, x/3 needs to be multiplied by 3 to get x by itself. Lastly, the answer should be plugged into the original equation to fact check. If 44 is put into 2 + y = 46, it would read 2 + 44 = 46, which is correct.

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