# The Craft of Word Problems

## CONTENTS OF CURRICULUM UNIT 04.05.01

- Narrative
- Place Value
- Addition and Subtraction (within 10)
- Fact Families
- Addition and Subtraction (within 20)
- Addition and Subtraction with and without regrouping
- Strategies for solving problems
- Lesson 1
- Lesson 2
- Lesson 3
- Lesson 4
- Lesson 5
- Lesson 6
- In the Future
- Mathematics Standards
- Bibliography for Teachers and Students

### Unit Guide

## The Relationship between Addition and Subtraction in Problem Solving

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## Strategies for solving problems

It is important for students to set up a framework. What should I do first? Next? Last? Depending on what grade level you teach you may want to make these steps simple or more complex. I like to use four questions to lead students in the right direction. These four important questions are as follows:

What facts are given?

What do I need to know?

How do I solve it?

Is my answer right?

In
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About Teaching Mathematics,
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Marilyn Burns discusses problem-solving procedures or strategies. She talks about how students naturally solve problems with their own strategy. But she stresses the importance of being familiar with a collection of strategies. Some strategies can be used alone or in combination with other strategies. Teachers should model strategies and give students time to apply them. Burns says that this will give students the tools to solve problems and broaden their problem-solving abilities. Burns suggests the following:

Look at the Pattern

Construct a table

Make an organized list

Act it out

Draw a picture

Use objects

Guess and check

Work backward

Write and equation

Solve a simpler (or similar) problem

Make a model

It is important to give students different avenues to solve problems. Students may use the strategies that they are comfortable with. Teachers could choose one or a combination of the strategies to solve a problem.