Let’s review what we know about signed numbers.
The following diagram shows how to use positive and negative numbers to describe temperature and elevation.
Here is a weather thermometer. Three of the numbers have been left off.
Here is a picture of some sea animals. The number line on the left shows the vertical position of each animal above or below sea level, in meters.
The north pole is in the middle of the ocean. A person at sea level at the north pole would be 3,949 miles from the center of the earth. The sea floor below the north pole is at an elevation of approximately -2.7 miles. The elevation of the south pole is about 1.7 miles. How far is a person standing on the south pole from a submarine at the sea floor below the north pole?
The distance from the sea floor below the north pole to the center of the earth is 3,949 - 2.7 = 3,946.3 miles.
The distance from the elevation of the south pole to the center of the earth is 3,949 + 1.7 = 3,950.7 miles.
The distance from a person standing on the south pole from a submarine at the sea floor below the north pole is 3,946.3 + 3,950.7 = 7897 miles.
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