Goals - Part 1

My goals in helping children with arithmetic are simple. I want them

  • to be good at solving all different types of word problems,
  • to like solving word problems,
  • to understand the problem solving methods (shortcuts) that they use and
  • to be able to communicate their reasoning to others.

1. What Is A Word Problem?

This is a word problem:

Rose had 2 lollipops. Trixie gave her 3 more. How many lollipops does Rose have now?

Here is the corresponding equation.

2 + 3 = □

The equation represents the word problem (and many others) abstractly.

Students should not be focused on equations until they understand the word problems that those equations represent.