# Maths - word problems

Children will encounter word problems in their maths tests so it is good to ensure they have a thorough understanding of these.

It helps to work together by:

• Discussing and identifying the maths operation needed i.e. addition, subtraction, multiplication or division.
• Discussing and explaining any new mathematical words e.g. cost, pairs, double, altogether etc.
• Discussing whether it is a multi-step or single-step problem.
• Talking about whether it requires a mental or written calculation.
• You may need to think of a simpler problem and use blocks, coins, a number line to visually explain the problem

For example, if a word problem says there are six biscuits in a box and two packets, your child can draw a picture and then count.

• Start with word problems which only need addition e.g. Sam has 3 toy cars, 5 balloons and a bicycle. How many toys does he have altogether?
• Continue with problems which use addition and subtraction e.g. David had 50p and bought a card at 5p and a book at 25p. How much change did he receive from £1?
• Proceed from there to problems that require a written calculation.

This is an extract from the first worksheet - How to help your child with maths word problems.