Negative Exponents Activities

Instructor: Heather Jenkins

Heather has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in special education. She was a public school teacher and administrator for 11 years.

If you're looking for ways to help your students understand exponents, then teaching them about negative exponents is essential. Use these activities to help students solve and simplify expressions and equations with negative exponents.

Underneath the Fraction Bar

Exponents can be difficult enough for students to work with when simplifying and solving expressions and equations. Adding a negative sign in front of the exponents may seem like it completely changes this process. When students learn how to work with negative exponents, they can simplify expressions and equations. Additionally, they're able to solve more complex mathematical problems. Let's look at some activities to help students understand negative exponents.

Table Fractions

Use this kinesthetic activity to help students understand the meaning of negative exponents.


  • Desks/tables
  • Dry-erase boards
  • Dry-erase markers

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