Intro to Integers, Absolute Value, and Distance

Positives & Negatives

It is important to have a strong conceptual understanding of negative numbers for both the non-calculator section of the the GED Math test and in order to provide a strong foundation for the algebra that the majority of the test consists of.

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Key concepts to understand:

  • A number and its opposite are the same distance from zero on a number line, but on opposite sides. For example: 4 and -4 are the same distance from 0 on a number line, 4 units away, but in opposite directions: -4 is four units to the left of zero and 4 is four units to the right of zero.

  • The absolute value of a number is defined as its distance from zero on the number line. Essentially, since distance is always positive, the absolute value of a number is always positive. For example: The absolute value of -6 is 6, but the absolute value of 11 is just 11.

  • The difference between two numbers can be found by determining how the distance between those two numbers on a number line. Difference or distance is always positive.

Watch the Virtual GED Class video below for a complete explanation and tons of worked example problems.


This Quizlet set practices conceptualizing positive and negative numbers using real-world scenarios and a number line.

Intro to Integers

This worksheet builds the concepts of integer understanding for students with some familiarity.

GED Style Absolute Value and Distance Application Problems

For GED Readiness, complete this assignment without a calculator.


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MathABILITY Basic Ops w/ Negs

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