Wednesday, March 18, 2015

How to Solve Multi-Step Word Problems



Word problems seem to be one of those types of things that some students "get" and others do not.  Even the students that can correctly solve a word problem at times seem to be unsure how they did it.

This blog post is dedicated to word problems and provides helpful strategies for helping students solve them.


Students often get lost in all of the words of a word problem and are unsure what they need to find first.


I like to begin with word problem frames. They are simple pieces of paper that show addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.  We then start at the end of the problem to figure out what the math problem is asking a person to find out.

Example
Emma had 223 buttons for an art craft.  Kate had 75 fewer buttons than Emma.  How many buttons did they have altogether?

Explanation
Step 1
The addition frame could be used to mentally organize what the word problem is asking.  It looks like this.

_____ + _____ = ______

Kate's buttons + Emma's buttons = Total

I first take out the frames and ask students which one fits what is being asked at the end of question.  After a few math lessons, many students can identify the last operation that must be done to actually solve the problem. In this case it is addition.  

Step 2
I ask students to plug in the known information.  It looks like this.

23 + ___ = ___

The students are able to determine that we know how many buttons Emma has, but in order to solve the problem, we must determine how many buttons Kate has.

Step 3
The word problem does not directly state the exact number of buttons that Kate has. Instead, it provides clues.  The number 75 indicates how many fewer buttons Kate has than Kate.  

This is often a sticky point.  Many students will often jump in and incorrectly state that Kate has 75 buttons.  We then look at the word fewer. The context of how it is used in this sentence shows that 75 must be taken away from 223 in order to determine the amount of buttons that Kate has.  223-75= 148



Step 4
I point each student's attention again to the word problem frame.  I then ask, do we have enough information to solve the problem? The students then add Kate and Emma's buttons to answer the question.

223 + 148 = 371

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Additional Teaching Resources
These are great for RTI, Math Review, Common Core and Test Prep

Guided Math 

The document includes:
*game cards
*a progress recording form
*a printable box
*an answer key



Click Here To Access Guided Math Level 1A

This document includes:
*20 task cards
*One-step addition and subtraction word problems with smaller numbers
*A printable storage box
*A student recording sheet
*An answer key
*A progress chart







This document includes:
*20 task cards
*One-step addition and subtraction word problems with larger numbers
*A printable storage box
*A student recording sheet
*An answer key
*A progress chart






This document includes:
*20 task cards
*Two-step addition and subtraction word problems with larger numbers
*A printable storage box
*A student recording sheet
*An answer key
*A progress chart

Fractions









 









Thursday, February 26, 2015

Big Sale


Literacy and Math Ideas is having a sale. Today is the last sale day.  Click Here

Monday, February 23, 2015

Make Retell Sticks


Making classroom tools from household items is a lot of fun.  This is a literacy center activity that you can make using objects that you most likely already have in your home.


If you have done painting in your home, you just might have a few leftover paint sticks.  If not, your local hardware store might hand you a few sticks free of charge.  

I began by dividing the paint stick into three parts.  They are labeled: beginning, middle, and end.


On some clothespins, I wrote events that occurred in a story that was recently read to the class.  (Put a few wrote details in the mix to test comprehension.)  Students then have to place the clothespins in the correct section on the paint stick.


For Additional Resources For The Classroom, Visit My Store
























Thursday, February 19, 2015

Math Operation Key Words


I am back with a freebie!  This handout is an excellent guide for students to keep inside of their folders.  It lists common key words that are used for operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.


Free Common Core Reading Progress Monitoring Chart




Hello everyone!  I am back with a Common Core progress monitoring freebie.  This is designed to accompany my daily Common Core reading practice, but can be used to progress monitor any Common Core document.  It can be kept inside of student folders or portfolios and is a great way to communicate with both parents and students.  Click Here To Access It

How to Divide Fractions

I am back to share a wall chart.  This wall chart shows step-by-step how to divide fractions.  



For self-teaching dividing fractions task cards, click the link below.  This is great for RTI math instruction.





Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Grade 5 Daily Common Core Freebie




Hello!  I am back with a fifth grade Common Core Reading freebie.  This daily practice and Common Core review is a free sample of one of my top selling resources.Click Here To Access It