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    math word problems
    By Carolyn

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    They have probably just not had a lot of practice with them. I think that if you offer them practice with word problems each day, then they will feel more confident about solving them. I teach fifth grade, and I assign word problems for homework each evening. We check them at the beginning of each math class before we move on to the new stuff.

    Try some strategies: Use concrete materials. Also, a good idea is to have the children model the problem with pictures. Give them a strategic plan to work with. Circle the key words. Determine which words in the story problem signal addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.

    It's always much easier, it seems, for kids just to pick up a problem like 143 x 5 and do it. However, make sure that they understand what 143 x 5 means. Some of them don't, surprisingly. They are just performing a rote task. Concept development and understanding helps kids with story problems.

    Just keep practicing each day. I know they will get it with patience and practice.

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