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Whenever math gives you an easy topic, take it and run with it! I am sometimes surprised by how many students struggle (really struggle) with factoring. That said, I always struggled with quadratics when I was in high school. And forgetting to move negative signs and decimals when simplifying (whoops!). Fortunately, I've gotten past that. My point is that even tutors and teachers start somewhere, and common mistakes are called 'common mistakes,' for a reason. Each of us has an area where we are just not as strong. No shame in that!   Factoring a number is nothing more than pulling apart its pieces. Glorified division, if you will. The difference with factoring is that you are dividing a given number by one of its smaller parts.   For example:   Let's use the number 20. We know from multiplication that we can multiply every number by 1, and come out with the same number. Our first two factors of 20 are 1 and 20.   We also know that... read more

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