a number ##x## divided by four, minus seventeen or

seventeen less than a quarter of a number ##x##or

a quarter of ##x## take away seventeen

There’s a variable in the expression so we can just say “a number ##x##”.

We are dividing that unknown number by four, so we can say ##x## divided by four, or since dividing by four is multiplying by one fourth, we can say one fourth of ##x## or a quarter of ##x## (especially since ‘of’ in math means multiplication).

Then we have to subtract seventeen. We could leave it as minus seventeen at the end, or we could say seventeen less than a fourth of ##x## or take away seventeen.

As can be seen, there are numerous ways to go about ‘verbalizing’ the expression, or any expression for that matter. Think creatively!