The associative property of addition allows us to group two addends and then add the third addend to the result.

**We can use this property in three ways:****1.** We start by adding the **first** and the **second** addend, solve the sum and add the **third** addend to the result.**2.** We start by adding the **second** and **third** addends, solve the sum and then add the **first** addend to the result.

- We start by adding the
**first**and the**third**addend, solve the sum and then add the**second**addend to the result.

We will place in **parentheses** around the addends that we want to group first to give them priority in the order of operations.

The associative property of addition also works in algebraic expressions, but *not* in subtraction operations.**Let's define the associative property of addition as:**

$a+b+c=(a+b)+c=a+(b+c)=(a+c)+b$