Verbal and problem solving
There are two steps to solving math word problems:
1. Translate the wording into a numeric equation
that combines smaller "expressions"
2. Solve the equation!
* Read the problem entirely
Get a feel for the whole problem
* List information and the variables you identify
Attach units of measure to the variables (gallons, miles, inches, etc.) * Define what answer you need,
as well as its units of measure
* Work in an organized manner
Working clearly will help you think clearly
* Draw and label all graphs and pictures clearly
* Note or explain each step of your process;
this will help you track variables and remember their meanings * Look for the "key" words (above)
Certain words indicate certain mathematical operations:
Math expressions (examples):
after you review the keywords, test yourself
| subtraction: 5-x
multiplication: 5*x; 5x
| division: 5 ÷ x; 5/x
Exercise: ("mouse over" the block for answer)
Key words for addition +
increased by; more than; combined together; total of; sum; added to
| What is the sum of 8 and y?
| 8 + y
Express the number (x) of apples
increased by two
| x + 2
Express the total weight of
Alphie the dog (x) and Cyrus the cat (y)
| x + y
Key words for Subtraction -
less than, fewer than, reduced by, decreased by, difference of
| What is four less than y
| y - 4
What is nine less than a number (y)
| y - 9
What if the number (x) of pizzas
was reduced by 6?
| x - 6
What is the difference of my weight (x)
and your weight (y)
| x - y
Key words for multiplication * x or integers next to each other (5y, xy): of, times, multiplied by
What is y multiplied by 13
| 13y or 13 * y
Three runners averaged "y" minutes.
Express their total running time:
I drive my car at 55 miles per hour.
How far will I go in "x" hours?
Key words for division ÷ /
per, a; out of; ratio of,...
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