Coordinates

Coordinates are a set of numbers (one, two or more of them) that determine the position of a point or a geometric body within a coordinate system. The order of the coordinates is important and it indicates the axis of reference for that specific coordinate. In other words, it tells you which number refers to which axis.

There are several coordinate systems that are widely in use: the number line, the Cartesian coordinate system, the polar coordinate system, cylindrical and spherical coordinate systems. Since the others require some more advanced mathematics that was not covered on this site yet, we are going to turn our attention two the two most commonly used systems – the number line and the Cartesian system.

The number line is probably the first coordinate system you will come across during your education. It is basically a line divided in number of equal parts with a randomly chosen point of origin (O). The coordinate in this system shows the distance of the point in question from the point of origin. If the coordinate is a negative number, it is found on the left side of the point of origin. If it is a positive number, it lays on the right side of the point of origin.

The Cartesian coordinate system is the most well known coordinate system. It was invented in the 17th century by the French philosopher and mathematician René Descartes and it started a revolution in mathematics, as it was the first systematic link between Euclidean geometry and algebra. It can be used to represent two- or three-dimensional space and, depending on that, it consists of two or three mutually perpendicular lines called axes (the singular form is axis).

coordinates

In the two-dimensional version of the system, the lines are commonly designated as the x-axis (usually the horizontal one) and the y-axis (the vertical one). The point in which the two axes meet is called the point of origin. The coordinates are usually given in pairs, whereas the first number is the distance from the point of origin on the x-axis and the second number is the distance from O on the y-axis. The upper part of the y-axis (above the point of origin) contains the positive values, while the lower part contains the negative values (levitra online). The positive part of the x-axis is the one on the right of the point of origin and the negative part is on the left. The system is divided into four quadrants. The quadrants are most often designated by roman numerals, starting with the upper-right quadrant (usually designated as the first quadrant). From that numbering goes counter-clockwise. In the first quadrant are coordinates with all positive values, such as (1,1), (3,7) and similar. In the second one the coordinates on the x-axis are negative, while the coordinates on the y-axis are positive and so on.

In the three-dimensional version, there are three perpendicular planes, three axes (x,y and z) and the position of a point is determined by three coordinates. Instead of quadrants, the system is divided into octants. The octant in which all three coordinates are positive is considered the first octant, but there are no established rules of nomenclature for the other octants.

The Midpoint formula

The midpoint is defined as the middle point of a line segment. It is equally distant (or equidistant) form both endpoints of the line segment. Depending on the number of dimensions, the position of the midpoint is determined by calculating each of its coordinates one at a time. If you are looking for the midpoint of a line segment on a number line, with endpoints (x1) and (x2), you will use the formula (x1 + x2)/2. The general form of that formula can be applied for all other coordinates in all other dimensions in search of the midpoint.

In a two-dimensional Cartesian system the endpoints will have coordinates (x1, y1) and (x2, y2) which means that to calculate the midpoint of that line segment you will have to calculate its x and y coordinates separately. The formulas you will use will be (x1 + x2)/2 for the x coordinate and (y1 +y2)/2 for the y coordinate.

If you wish to practice finding and plotting coordinates, as well as using the midpoint formula, please use the free worksheets below.

Coordinates exams for teachers

Exam Name File Size Downloads Upload date
Coordinates
Defining quadrant
Coordinates – Define quadrant number – very easy 662.2 kB 4517 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Define quadrant number – easy 787.6 kB 2457 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Define quadrant number – medium 1.4 MB 3447 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Define quadrant number – hard 3.7 MB 2647 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Define quadrant number – very hard 4.1 MB 3061 September 3, 2019
Plot a point
Coordinates – Plot a point – very easy 374.2 kB 3243 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Plot a point – easy 495.3 kB 2537 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Plot a point – medium 1.3 MB 4382 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Plot a point – hard 3.6 MB 2891 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Plot a point – very hard 4 MB 3004 September 3, 2019
Detect a point
Coordinates – Detect each point – very easy 364.2 kB 2154 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Detect each point – easy 443.5 kB 1943 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Detect each point – medium 1.2 MB 2654 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Detect each point – hard 3.6 MB 2163 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Detect each point – very hard 3.9 MB 2305 September 3, 2019
The Midpoint Formula
Integers
Midpoint Formula – Integers – very easy 613.1 kB 2245 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Integers – easy 618.5 kB 1526 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Integers – medium 630.2 kB 2002 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Integers – hard 642.4 kB 1536 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Integers – very hard 679.8 kB 1540 September 3, 2019
Decimals
Midpoint Formula – Decimals – very easy 652.3 kB 1320 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Decimals – easy 649.1 kB 1336 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Decimals – medium 659.1 kB 1333 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Decimals – hard 665.1 kB 1237 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Decimals – very hard 696.3 kB 1232 September 3, 2019
Fractions
Midpoint Formula – Fractions – very easy 672 kB 1393 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Fractions – easy 674.8 kB 1290 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Fractions – medium 694.5 kB 1285 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Fractions – hard 738.9 kB 1198 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Fractions – very hard 822.8 kB 1349 September 3, 2019
Line segments
Midpoint Formula – Line segment – easy 1.4 MB 1890 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Line segment – medium 1.4 MB 1502 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Line segment – hard 1.4 MB 1530 September 3, 2019

Coordinates worksheets for students

Worksheet Name File Size Downloads Upload date
Coordinates – Define quadrant number 37.2 MB 2633 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Plot a point 36 MB 3056 September 3, 2019
Coordinates – Detect each point 34.8 MB 2240 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Integers 260.5 kB 2093 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Decimals 326 kB 1712 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Fractions 517.3 kB 1373 September 3, 2019
Midpoint Formula – Line segment 7.6 MB 1679 September 3, 2019