Most students seem to disagree with the effectiveness of word problems. Those who are good at words do not appreciate the numbers, and those who are math wizards cannot fathom adding words to their math. Lake Forrest Prep is a private school in Orlando that has come up with a sequence of strategies to help word problems relate to all thinkers.
- Take Time to Read Completely: Read the entire problem through once before putting the pencil to your paper. Rather than diving in and trying to solve the problem, which is what many students attempt, it is more beneficial to read the question to formulate a proper response.
- Underline or Highlight Key Words: Specific words require specific actions – “remaining”, for subtraction or “times” for multiplication – that determine the outcome of the equation.
- Find a Solving Strategy: Drawing a table or picture, working backward, or using mental math are some great examples. See what works best for you. Some word problems are more easily solved with logical reasoning while others call for a chart to sort through the information.
- Check Your Work. Sometimes a quick check is all it takes – could the base of the isosceles triangle really be greater than its height? – while other problems may require the numbers to be placed in a chart or graph to see if the pattern continues.
- Take Advantage of Online Help: Look online for practice word problems for any level of education. These free sites will keep your learner on track while supplying valuable information: Scholastic, Math Playground, Math iTools, IXL Word Problems, and a host of other sites waiting to be discovered!
Word problems do not have to be dreadful once you find the best method to mastering them. Lake Forrest Prep is a private school in Orlando that strives to help our students succeed in mathematics and all other subjects. If your child has tried these strategies and is still struggling with math word problems, scheduling a meeting with your child’s teacher by calling us at 407-331-5144 today.