Teaching the Laws of Exponents: Product of Powers

Page content

Once the students have learned the basics of exponents (base, exponent, power, factor) you can move on to teaching how to multiply two or more powers that have the same base.

Common Core State Standards

A.SSE.2: Use the structure of an expression to identify ways to rewrite it.

F.IF.8b: Use the properties of exponents to interpret expressions for exponential functions

Mathematical Practice(s): 8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

Learning Target(s)

  • I can explain why equivalent expressions are equivalent.
  • I can look for and identify clues in the structure of expressions in order to rewrite it another way.

Essential Question(s)

Why structure expressions in different ways?


  • Monomial
  • Equivalent expressions
  • Base
  • Exponent
  • Power
  • Factor



  • Explain vocabulary and have the students write them in their own words
  • Start a Foldable. You need 4 sheets of printer paper (any color or just white), stagger fold it to make tabs and then fold the top half over to meet the bottom half and now you have 8 tabs. Staple at the top to hold all pages together. The tabs should be going downward (and open upward).
  • Write Laws of Exponents on the large, top tab. You can put anything else on the cover if you like.
  • On the next tab down, label it as Product of Powers and provide a basic example.
  • Now lift up the top tab and write on the top portion – Same base, add exponents (keep the base). On the bottom portion that says, “Product of Powers”, provide two examples and explain each example in detail.

* Now you have the basis of your lesson and you can move on to Guided Practice.

Guided Practice: 3-6 practice problems. You can do 1or 2 problems with the students at the board (Smart Board, Elmo, etc.) and then put them in small groups of no more than 3 to do the rest. These problems can be pulled from any textbook or other resource.

Independent Practice: Approximately 5 problems to be done alone.

Closure/Review: Ask 1-3 questions relating to today’s lesson to be answered by the class as a whole. This will give you a general idea of the class’ understanding of today’s topic.

Exit Ticket: This is to be done the last 3-5 minutes of class and given to you (by hand or in a designated area of your room) as they leave class. Possible question(s): 1)Can I apply the method learned today to solve this problem?

(b2) * (c3). Explain why or why not.

Below is the entire foldable with examples in a Word document. Each day you can add to the foldable and at the end of the lessons/unit, you will have notes for each area in one location. This attachment will be at the end of each lesson for Laws of Exponents.


(Foldables are interactive organizers created by Dinah Zike). This foldable is the Layered-Look Book.

This post is part of the series: The Laws of Exponents

This series goes beyond the basics with your 8th grade students.

  1. Laws of Exponents Lesson One: Product of Powers
  2. Laws of Exponents Two: Power of a Power & Power of a Product
  3. Laws of Exponents Three: Quotient of a Power & Power of a Quotient
  4. Laws of Exponents Four: Zero and Negative Exponents