Learning to plot coordinates on a grid often begins in the fifth or sixth grades and increases in the level of difficulty through to high school and beyond. The grid contains an x and a y-axis which are really two perpendicular lines. One trick to remember this (and yes, many students often forget which is which) is to think of y as being the longer letter thus it will always be the vertical line on the axis. x is the horizontal line on the axis. However, if you have a different trick to remember the x and y-axis, use what works for you.

The point where the x-axis and the y-axis intersect is referred to as the origin. You will also see the grids referred to as the cartesian coordinates. Numbers for plotting points are indicated as (3,4) or (2,2) etc. The first number means you will start on the x-axis and move that many across, the second number is the number on the y-axis. Therefore, for the ordered pair (3,5) I would go across 3 and up five. There are actually four quadrants on the grid when 0 is the center of the grid. This allows for the plotting of positive and negative integers. The negative integers will fall to the left of the axis from where the two perpendicular lines intersect and they will also fall below the intersecting perpendicular lines on the y-axis.

This is just a brief overview of how the cartesian grid, or plotting lines on the coordinate worksheets, work. With a little practice, you'll understand the concept in no time. There are seven worksheets with the answers on the second page of the PDF worksheet.