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I think this is a fairly standard introduction to equations, attempting to embed the idea that the rule is that you perform the same operation to both sides in order to keep it balanced.

This works particularly well if you have some balance scales in your department with which you can demonstrate an example of finding an unknown mass by removing objects from both sides etc.

At Highgate, we used to follow it up by taking the model further, to cover other operations / situations which don’t really fit the traditional balance model. This worksheet does that, but I’m not sure I’d particularly advice it unless your whole department is working together to get the pupils thinking about equations as balances in this way.

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