27 Idioms for Math: Adding Meaning to Numbers


Mathematics is a universal language, and just like any language, it has its own idiomatic expressions. Idioms for math may not involve equations and formulas, but they add a playful twist to our understanding of numbers and calculations.

From “Crunch the numbers” to “Keep your options open,” these idioms for math will help you count on a new way to express yourself.

Mathematics is like a toolbox, with each concept and equation serving as a different tool, ready to solve the problems that life presents. For more comparisons to describe mathematics, you can check this link: Similes for math. And for a variety of metaphors related to math, you can explore this link: Metaphors for math.

What is an Idiom for Math?

Idioms for math are colorful expressions inspired by the world of numbers and calculations. They allow us to convey various concepts and situations using math-related phrases.


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Created by Dr. Julia Rossi

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What is a simile?

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Identify the simile in the following sentence: “She swims like a fish.”

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What is a metaphor?

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Which of the following is a metaphor?

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What is an idiom?

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What does the idiom “break the ice” mean?

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What is an adjective?

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Choose the adjective in the following sentence: “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”

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What is an abbreviation?

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What does the abbreviation “e.g.” stand for?

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What is a verb?

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Identify the verb in the following sentence: “The cat sleeps on the sofa.”

13 / 20

“Out of the frying pan into the fire” is an example of:

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Which of the following is an adjective?

15 / 20

The abbreviation “NASA” stands for:

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Choose the metaphor in the following sentence: “Time is a thief.”

17 / 20

What does the idiom “hit the books” mean?

18 / 20

Which of the following sentences contains a simile?

19 / 20

“LOL” is an abbreviation for:

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Identify the verb in this sentence: “They whispered secrets into the night.”

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Let’s dive into the meanings and usage of these idioms by the numbers:

IdiomMeaningIn a Sentence
Crunch the NumbersTo analyze and calculate data or information.Before making a purchase, it’s essential to crunch the numbers.
Do the MathTo perform mathematical calculations or figure something out logically.She had to do the math to determine how much time she had left to complete her assignment.
It Doesn’t Add UpWhen something doesn’t make sense or when the facts don’t align.His explanation for being late just doesn’t add up; it contradicts what he said earlier.
Count Your BlessingsTo appreciate and be grateful for the positive aspects of your life.Even during difficult times, it’s important to count your blessings and focus on what you have.
A Piece of the PieTo share in the benefits or rewards of a situation or endeavor.Each team member contributed, so everyone deserves a piece of the pie when it comes to recognition.
Put Two and Two TogetherTo figure out or understand something by connecting related pieces of information.When she noticed the missing cookies and the chocolate stains on his shirt, she put two and two together and realized he was the culprit.
In the Same BallparkTo be approximately in the same range or category.Their estimates for the project’s cost weren’t identical, but they were in the same ballpark, which made it easier to decide.
Take It with a Grain of SaltTo be skeptical or not fully believe something without confirming its accuracy.When you hear rumors, it’s best to take them with a grain of salt until you have reliable information.
A Level Playing FieldA situation where everyone has equal opportunities, and no one has an advantage.The new rules aim to create a level playing field for all athletes, ensuring fair competition.
Pull a Fast OneTo deceive or trick someone in a cunning or dishonest way.He attempted to pull a fast one by selling counterfeit products online.
Divide and ConquerTo defeat or deal with a problem by breaking it into smaller, more manageable parts.When tackling a large project, it’s often best to divide and conquer by assigning specific tasks to different team members.
Square the CircleAttempting to do something that is impossible or extremely challenging.Trying to make everyone happy in a large group is like trying to square the circle; it’s just not feasible.
Jump Through HoopsTo go through a series of difficult or time-consuming tasks or obstacles to achieve a goal.The process of obtaining a visa required jumping through numerous hoops, including extensive paperwork and interviews.
Hit the JackpotTo achieve great success or win a substantial prize.By launching their innovative product, the company hit the jackpot and gained widespread recognition.
Throw in the TowelTo give up or surrender in the face of a difficult or challenging situation.After facing constant setbacks, she decided to throw in the towel and pursue a different career.
Leave No Stone UnturnedTo make every possible effort and explore all options when searching for a solution or answer.In their quest to find the lost keys, they left no stone unturned, searching every room and even the garden.
Play by the NumbersTo follow a set of rules or guidelines strictly and methodically.To succeed in the highly regulated industry, it’s crucial to play by the numbers and adhere to industry standards.
Cover All the BasesTo address all necessary aspects or details of a situation to ensure success or preparedness.When organizing the event, she made sure to cover all the bases, from logistics to guest accommodations.
The Ball Is in Your CourtThe responsibility for making a decision or taking action lies with you.After presenting the proposal, the ball is in your court to decide whether to proceed with the project.
Change the EquationTo alter the circumstances or factors involved in a situation.Implementing new policies can change the equation and lead to improved employee satisfaction.
A Tough Nut to CrackA difficult problem or challenge that requires a lot of effort to solve.The final puzzle in the escape room proved to be a tough nut to crack, but they eventually cracked it.
Cutting CornersTaking shortcuts or compromising quality to save time or resources.Cutting corners in the construction project led to structural issues that required costly repairs.
On the Same WavelengthTo have a similar understanding or share common thoughts and ideas with someone.During the brainstorming session, they were on the same wavelength and quickly generated creative solutions.
A Whole New BallgameA situation that is entirely different from what was previously experienced.Transitioning from high school to college is a whole new ballgame, with greater independence and academic challenges.
The Proof Is in the PuddingThe true value or quality of something can only be judged when it is put to the test or experienced.They claimed their product was the best, but the proof is in the pudding, and customers will determine if it lives up to the hype.
Don’t Count Your Chickens Before They HatchAdvising against making plans or assuming success before it is certain.Although they had promising leads, they were reminded not to count their chickens before they hatch in the competitive market.
Keep Your Options OpenTo remain flexible and not commit to one specific course of action, allowing for various possibilities.She decided to keep her options open by exploring different career paths before making a final decision.
idioms for math

Idioms for Math

1. Crunch the Numbers

Meaning: To carefully analyze and calculate data or information.

In a Sentence: Before making a purchase, it’s essential to crunch the numbers to ensure it fits your budget.

2. Do the Math

Meaning: To perform mathematical calculations or figure something out logically.

In a Sentence: She had to do the math to determine how much time she had left to complete her assignment.

3. It Doesn’t Add Up

Meaning: When something doesn’t make sense or when the facts don’t align.

In a Sentence: His explanation for being late just doesn’t add up; it contradicts what he said earlier.

4. Count Your Blessings

Meaning: To appreciate and be grateful for the positive aspects of your life.

In a Sentence: Even during difficult times, it’s important to count your blessings and focus on what you have.

5. A Piece of the Pie

Meaning: To share in the benefits or rewards of a situation or endeavor.

In a Sentence: Each team member contributed, so everyone deserves a piece of the pie when it comes to recognition.

6. Put Two and Two Together

Meaning: To figure out or understand something by connecting related pieces of information.

In a Sentence: When she noticed the missing cookies and the chocolate stains on his shirt, she put two and two together and realized he was the culprit.

7. In the Same Ballpark

Meaning: To be approximately in the same range or category.

In a Sentence: Their estimates for the project’s cost weren’t identical, but they were in the same ballpark, which made it easier to decide.

8. Take It with a Grain of Salt

Meaning: To be skeptical or not fully believe something without confirming its accuracy.

In a Sentence: When you hear rumors, it’s best to take them with a grain of salt until you have reliable information.

9. A Level Playing Field

Meaning: A situation where everyone has equal opportunities, and no one has an advantage.

In a Sentence: The new rules aim to create a level playing field for all athletes, ensuring fair competition.

10. Pull a Fast One

Meaning: To deceive or trick someone in a cunning or dishonest way.

In a Sentence: He attempted to pull a fast one by selling counterfeit products online.

11. Divide and Conquer

Meaning: To defeat or deal with a problem by breaking it into smaller, more manageable parts.

In a Sentence: When tackling a large project, it’s often best to divide and conquer by assigning specific tasks to different team members.

12. Square the Circle

Meaning: Attempting to do something that is impossible or extremely challenging.

In a Sentence: Trying to make everyone happy in a large group is like trying to square the circle; it’s just not feasible.

13. Jump Through Hoops

Meaning: To go through a series of difficult or time-consuming tasks or obstacles to achieve a goal.

In a Sentence: The process of obtaining a visa required jumping through numerous hoops, including extensive paperwork and interviews.

14. Hit the Jackpot

Meaning: To achieve great success or win a substantial prize.

In a Sentence: By launching their innovative product, the company hit the jackpot and gained widespread recognition.

15. Throw in the Towel

Meaning: To give up or surrender in the face of a difficult or challenging situation.

In a Sentence: After facing constant setbacks, she decided to throw in the towel and pursue a different career.

16. Leave No Stone Unturned

Meaning: To make every possible effort and explore all options when searching for a solution or answer.

In a Sentence: In their quest to find the lost keys, they left no stone unturned, searching every room and even the garden.

17. Play by the Numbers

Meaning: To follow a set of rules or guidelines strictly and methodically.

In a Sentence: To succeed in the highly regulated industry, it’s crucial to play by the numbers and adhere to industry standards.

18. Cover All the Bases

Meaning: To address all necessary aspects or details of a situation to ensure success or preparedness.

In a Sentence: When organizing the event, she made sure to cover all the bases, from logistics to guest accommodations.

19. The Ball Is in Your Court

Meaning: The responsibility for making a decision or taking action lies with you.

In a Sentence: After presenting the proposal, the ball is in your court to decide whether to proceed with the project.

20. Change the Equation

Meaning: To alter the circumstances or factors involved in a situation.

In a Sentence: Implementing new policies can change the equation and lead to improved employee satisfaction.

21. A Tough Nut to Crack

Meaning: A difficult problem or challenge that requires a lot of effort to solve.

In a Sentence: The final puzzle in the escape room proved to be a tough nut to crack, but they eventually cracked it.

22. Cutting Corners

Meaning: Taking shortcuts or compromising quality to save time or resources.

In a Sentence: Cutting corners in the construction project led to structural issues that required costly repairs.

23. On the Same Wavelength

Meaning: To have a similar understanding or share common thoughts and ideas with someone.

In a Sentence: During the brainstorming session, they were on the same wavelength and quickly generated creative solutions.

24. A Whole New Ballgame

Meaning: A situation that is entirely different from what was previously experienced.

In a Sentence: Transitioning from high school to college is a whole new ballgame, with greater independence and academic challenges.

25. The Proof Is in the Pudding

Meaning: The true value or quality of something can only be judged when it is put to the test or experienced.

In a Sentence: They claimed their product was the best, but the proof is in the pudding, and customers will determine if it lives up to the hype.

26. Don’t Count Your Chickens Before They Hatch

Meaning: Advising against making plans or assuming success before it is certain.

In a Sentence: Although they had promising leads, they were reminded not to count their chickens before they hatch in the competitive market.

27. Keep Your Options Open

Meaning: To remain flexible and not commit to one specific course of action, allowing for various possibilities.

In a Sentence: She decided to keep her options open by exploring different career paths before making a final decision.

Quizzes About The Idioms in The Article

Quiz 1: Crunch the Numbers

  1. What does the idiom “Crunch the numbers” mean?
    a) To eat a lot of snacks
    b) To analyze and calculate data or information
    c) To exercise vigorously
  2. Can you use “Crunch the numbers” in a sentence?

Quiz 2: Count Your Blessings

  1. What does the idiom “Count your blessings” mean?
    a) Count the number of people around you
    b) To appreciate and be grateful for the positive aspects of your life
    c) To count your money
  2. Can you use “Count your blessings” in a sentence?

Quiz 3: Jump Through Hoops

  1. What does the idiom “Jump through hoops” mean?
    a) To leap over actual hoops
    b) To go through a series of difficult or time-consuming tasks or obstacles to achieve a goal
    c) To jump for joy
  2. Can you use “Jump through hoops” in a sentence?

Quiz 4: The Ball Is in Your Court

  1. What does the idiom “The ball is in your court” mean?
    a) It’s time to play basketball
    b) The responsibility for making a decision or taking action lies with you
    c) It’s time to start a new game
  2. Can you use “The ball is in your court” in a sentence?

Quiz 5: Put Two and Two Together

  1. What does the idiom “Put two and two together” mean?
    a) To add numbers
    b) To figure out or understand something by connecting related pieces of information
    c) To create a mathematical equation
  2. Can you use “Put two and two together” in a sentence?

Quiz 6: Divide and Conquer

  1. What does the idiom “Divide and conquer” mean?
    a) To divide your lunch into smaller portions
    b) To defeat or deal with a problem by breaking it into smaller, more manageable parts
    c) To divide a group of people
  2. Can you use “Divide and conquer” in a sentence?

Quiz 7: Cover All the Bases

  1. What does the idiom “Cover all the bases” mean?
    a) To play baseball well
    b) To address all necessary aspects or details of a situation to ensure success or preparedness
    c) To cover your head with a baseball cap
  2. Can you use “Cover all the bases” in a sentence?

Quiz 8: The Proof Is in the Pudding

  1. What does the idiom “The proof is in the pudding” mean?
    a) The pudding is delicious
    b) The true value or quality of something can only be judged when it is put to the test or experienced
    c) The pudding has a secret ingredient
  2. Can you use “The proof is in the pudding” in a sentence?

Quiz 9: Throw in the Towel

  1. What does the idiom “Throw in the towel” mean?
    a) To throw a towel
    b) To give up or surrender in the face of a difficult or challenging situation
    c) To dry off after a shower
  2. Can you use “Throw in the towel” in a sentence?

Quiz 10: Don’t Count Your Chickens Before They Hatch

  1. What does the idiom “Don’t count your chickens before they hatch” mean?
    a) Counting chickens in a coop
    b) Advising against making plans or assuming success before it is certain
    c) Counting eggs before they hatch
  2. Can you use “Don’t count your chickens before they hatch” in a sentence?

Feel free to test your knowledge and have fun with these quizzes!

Conclusion

These idiomatic expressions for math prove that numbers can be both practical and playful in our everyday conversations. Whether you’re navigating challenges, making decisions, or expressing gratitude, these idioms offer a unique way to count on the power of words.

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