How to Subtract Three-Digit Numbers

Do you remember what subtraction is?

**Subtraction** is taking away from a number.

There are a few ways you can subtract.

One way to subtract is by **counting back**.

Let's try an example:

893 - 50 =?

👉 Count back by **Ten **5 times.

So, 893 - 50 is **843**.

Another example is this:

972 - 400 =?

👉 Count back by one **hundred **4 times**.**

So, 972 - 400 is **572**.

This works for easy problems, but if the numbers are **too hard **to count back in your head, use **column form **instead. 👍

Let's learn from an example.

255 - 131= ?

First, we write the problem in **column form.**

Then we solve the problem **one column **at a time.

Which column do you think we subtract first? 🤔

**👉 First,** we subtract the **Ones****.**

What's 5 - 1?

You're right! It's 4.

We write 4 in the Ones place.

**Next,** we subtract the **Tens**.

In **column form,** we subtract one column at a time, starting from the Ones, then the Tens, and **lastly **the Hundreds.

We see there are 5 Tens. We're taking away 3.

Here's what that looks like in blocks:

So what's 5 - 3?

Excellent! It's 2.

We write 2 in the Tens place.

**Lastly,** we subtract the **Hundreds**.

There are 2 Hundreds. We're taking away 1.

2 - 1 is 1.

We write 1 in the Hundreds place.

So, 255 - 131 = **124**.

Great job! 👏

Now start the practice to master subtracting 3-digit numbers on your own.

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