# Keywords to solve math word problems

An algebraic expression is a collection of numbers, variables, operations, and grouping symbols. Draw a four-quadrant table on the board and write a different mathematical operation title in each quadrant: addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. The first step to effectively translating and solving word problems is to read the problem entirely. Wanneer autoplay is ingeschakeld, wordt een aanbevolen video automatisch als volgende afgespeeld. The grouping symbols are usually a set of parentheses, but they can also be sets of brackets or braces.

In this lesson, students will take turns acting as "math coaches" who will assist other students in solving word problems by identifying key words that usually indicate specific mathematical operations. Many (if not all) keywords that indicate mathematical operations are familiar words. In much the same way that you can translate Spanish into English, you can translate English words into symbols, the language of mathematics. Pick variables to stand for the unknows, clearly labelling these variables with what they stand for. For that reason, digitization and reproduction of all content on the Internet can only be with permission through a licensed agreement. Probably the greatest source of error, though, is the use of variables without definitions. Explain to the class that whether they notice it or not, they are constantly interpreting key words in word problems in order to determine which mathematical operations to use in solving the problems. How many pencils should he pack in each box so each customer gets the same number of pencils?

It was so interesting to watch how children were solving problems and to see what was going on in their heads. I learned that students should be taught how to understand the context of a word problem not to look for keywords. When you pick a letter to stand for something, write down explicitly what that latter is meant to stand for.

The hardest thing about doing word problems is using the part where you need to take the English words and translate them into mathematics. Circulate around the room as students work, ensuring that students are multiplying the number of students in the classroom by four in order to determine how many index cards are needed. The first two are the most basic problems that you would introduce to kindergarten and first graders. In translating expressions, you want to be well acquainted with basic keywords that translate into mathematical operations: addition keywords, subtraction keywords, multiplication keywords, and division keywords, which are covered in the four following sections. Please be aware that the Guides welcome, and are under, continuous review and revision.

Have a student volunteer come to the front board to write the mathematical equation that he or she used to determine the answer to the problem. Give students something to look for when reading word problems to know when to add, subtract, multiple or divide. All of the above problems are join problems, which means that the operation is adding, although the unknown is in different places in each problem. On the white board, display the Visual Thesaurus word map for "arithmetic operation" and then click on the meaning "a mathematical operation involving numbers" in order to reveal the four mathematical operations: addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.

A quick google search landed me on these definitions for addition and subtraction: . Also notice that you do not simplify the expression and get “3” for the answer because you are just translating words into symbols and not performing the math. You know that half of ten is five, and now you can see which mathematical operations gets you the right value. You need to be able to translate words into mathematical symbols, focusing on keywords that indicate the mathematical procedures required to solve the problem—both the operation and the order of the expression. Website overview: Since 1996 the Study Guides and Strategies Website has been researched, authored, maintained and supported as an international, learner-centric, educational public service. Then, above that equation, write the original word problem and ask students which specific word in the problem let them know that they needed to multiply the two numbers in order to determine the number of index cards needed for the class (i. Also note that order is important in the "quotient/ratio of" and "difference between/of" constructions.

When I first started teaching, I used to display lists of keywords that students could use to solve word problems. Permission is granted to freely copy, adapt, and distribute individual Study Guides in print format in non-commercial educational settings that benefit learners.