Posted by **mi** on Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 12:14pm.

tom was paid $4.50 per hour for painting a fence and $ 6.50 per hour for mowing grass. He worked 7 hours and earned $39.50. How many hours did it take him to paint the fence/

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**George**, Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 1:07pm
the best way to go about this question is trial and error. if he worked 7 hours and made 39.50, then if he works 3 hours painting the fence, and 4 hours mowing the grass then he makes 39.50.

i'm sure you can make equations for it but it's much quicker and easier to go about this question this way.

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**mi**, Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 1:21pm
my 6th grade grandaughter needs an equation. than you.

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**mi**, Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 1:41pm
george can you give me some additional help. thanks

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**Jen**, Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 1:53pm
x+y=7

4.5x+6.5y=39.5

Multiply the top equation by -4.5 to cancel the x's:

-4.5x-4.5y=-31.5

4.5x+6.5y=39.5

2y=8

y=4

Put that back in the first equation to solve for x.

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**Jen**, Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 1:54pm
You do NOT want to attempt this problem by trial and error.

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**George**, Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 2:09pm
I feel i may have stepped on some toes. I am sorry for that. I am not the most intelligent person in the world and I sincerly appoligize.

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**Jen**, Tuesday, September 7, 2010 at 10:17pm
No need for an apology, George. I was simply saying that it's not the best method. :)

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