Friday, 9 November 2012

Simple Steps for Solving Word Problems in Math

When teaching any of the four operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) the problem solving aspect is usually tricky for students. Getting a sense of meaning is the key to understanding word problems. Younger students can do a sketch of the situation in the word problem to help them to visualize what is happening. Older students can skip that part and go straight to the steps below. This is a poster that I use to guide my students along as they do problem solving. I like to see written statements that are clear and the poster below shows the specific sequence that I prefer.

Problem-Solving-Tips-in-Math-Word-Problems



Here is an example of a subtraction word problem that is solved using the steps shown above.

Math-Subtraction-Word-Problems


 I still have a few kids who forget to 'attach the noun' as seen above, the noun 'students' was attached to the answer. Many times they would just write 'Answer = 50' and I'll ask 'Fifty what?... Fifty cars?... Fifty trees?' Then they'll make their corrections by adding the word that applies to the answer.  

If you are teaching problem solving with your students, you may need these free addition and subtraction word posters which show the many different operation word clues for addition and subtraction.
  

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As a Caribbean primary school teacher, I share my unique classroom with the world through this blog. Readers step into my class through the pictures, articles and classroom samples of games and lessons used in my class. I have been teaching since 2005 at the std. 4 primary level in Trinidad and Tobago. I am particularly interested in sharing my own personal lesson plans, tests and activities. Teachers need to share ideas and support each other because in doing so, we help to educate our students and develop ourselves as teachers. Technology is ever evolving and we as teachers should get on board with it, collaborate and keep up to date with this new age that we live in. Our students belong to this technological era and we must embrace opportunities to learn from each other in this global community. I also love to express my creativity in the classroom. I am a bit of a craftster . So I'm always cutting, gluing or making something... a game, a chart, a learning center, etc. So, teachers and parents, feel free to stop by and see what's new at Nyla's Crafty Teaching!