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Fun Ways To Practice Word Problems Your Students Will Love!

June 13, 2024
Counting coins and counting money word problems

Let’s face it- word problems are difficult for students and can also make you want to pull your hair out!

Counting coins and counting money word problems

As challenging as math word problems may be for both teachers and students, the benefits they offer are invaluable. By practicing math word problems year-round, young learners develop essential skills, including multidimensional learning, enhanced mathematical fluency, and improved critical thinking abilities. Implementing strategies that make word problems enjoyable ensures that students are motivated and actively engaged in the learning process.

Addition and subtraction fact families word problems

Here are 4 ways you can keep students engaged while also making word problem practice fun.

What kid doesn’t love technology? Use virtual manipulatives- coins, base 10 blocks, movable clock pieces, to make learning interactive rather than passive. Students will not only get practice solving word problems, but also technology problem solving experience- using keyboard shortcuts, manipulating shapes virtually, typing in a text box….. or figuring out how to add a text box if they delete it. AGGHHHHHH!!!!!! If you know, you know.

Counting coins and counting money math word problems

Get kids up and moving around the room. Post word problem task cards all over the room and have students find them in order to solve. Give them a clipboard, recording sheet, and a pencil and they are off on their way. Pro Tip: Put them in number order sequentially and show students where they are located so they are not wandering around aimlessly wasting precious problem solving time.

Telling Time Word Problems

Learning is always fun when it is presented as a game. Have students collaborate and solve word problem task cards using board games. It will promote teamwork and communication among students. Collaboration will enhance students’ social skills, encourage peer learning, and foster a supportive learning environment. It is a win win situation!

Word Problems Games

This is one of my favorite ways to teach word problems. Display the problem on the whiteboard and have students use individual whiteboards or copies of the problem. Choral read the problem together- this REALLY helps your struggling readers. Pick out key words together and fill in the parts of the number bonds you know. Use a number talk strategy and have students brainstorm ways you could solve the problem. Use a gradual release model of “I Do, We Do, You Do” where you gradually shift the learning from the teacher to the students. It builds confidence over time when you start with explicit instruction and modeling, move to guided practice, and finally independent practice.

multiplication and division word problems

Are word problems difficult for young scholars- absolutely yes! However, the more they consistently practice, the better they will get.

If you are looking for a collection of yearlong word problems aligned to standards, I’ve got you!! Click on the picture or on this link 2nd Grade Yearlong Math Word Problem Task Cards to head directly to it.

2nd grade word problems
4 Ways To Practice Word Problems Blog Post
Paige O'Kelley

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