Problem Solving Study Guide
Steps to Solving Word Problems: (Follow these steps EVERY time you see a word problem)
1. Read the problem to yourself.
· this will help you understand the problem better
· look for key words that will help you figure out what to do.
2. Identify the Key Words.
· highlight or underline the words that tell you what operation to use.
· Do the key words tell you to:
Add? Subtract? Multiply? Divide?
· Examples of Key Words:
Add 
Subtract 
Multiply 
Divide 
All together 
Less then 
Times, groups 

More 
difference 
product 
Quotient 
3. Make a plan.
· Decide which operation you are using.
· Gather all the information you will need:
(all the #’s, and the sign of the operation)
· SHOW ALL OF YOUR WORK TO GET THE CREDIT!!!
4. Solve the Problem.
· Do the math for the problem by simply carrying out the plan that YOU made.
· Again, SHOW ALL YOUR WORK!!
· Make sure you make sure that your answer is written clearly.
5. Check your answer.
· Ask yourself, “Does this make sense?”
· If you have to, do the problem again.
Examples of How to Solve Word Problems:
1. Mr. Cole has 8 students in his first class. He has 12 students in his second class. How many students does Mr. Cole have all together?
Steps:
1 I read the problem and looked for key words.
2 The key words are ALL TOGETHER
* ALL TOGETHER: tells me to Add (+)
3 Write out the problem
12 + 8 =
4 Show all work.
12
+ +
8
___________________________________________________________
20 students
2. Sam has 20 baseball cards. He gave away 8 of them to Joe. How many baseball cards does Sam have left?
Steps:
1 Read the problem.
2 Key words: “GAVE AWAY” (means take away, minus)
3 Write out the problem
4 Show all your work
20  8 = 12 baseball cards
3. Jordan has 5 books. Robert has 5 times more books than Jordan. Find the product of Robert’s books.
1 Read the problem
2 Key Word: “TIMES” (means multiply) (x)
3 Write out the problem
5 x 5 =
4 Show all work
X 5
Book Book Book Book Book
5 Book Book Book Book Book
Book Book Book Book Book
Book Book Book Book Book
Book Book Book Book Book
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25 books
Practice Problems for you to do:
Remember:
1. Read the problem to yourself
2. Identify the Key Words
3. Make a Plan
4. Solve the Problem
5. Check your answer
1. John earned $30.00 for 6 hours of work. How much money did John make per hour?
2. Liz has 35 DVD’s. Zach has 17 DVD’s. Dan has 3 more CDs than Zach. How many more CD’s does Liz have than Zach?
Remember:
Read the problem to yourself
Identify the Key Words
Make a Plan
Solve the Problem
Check your answer
3. John earned $30.00 for 6 hours of work. How much money did John make per hour?
4. Ms. Smith can read 10 pages in 2 minutes. Ms. Connely can read 18 pages in 6 minutes. Who reads the most pages per minute?
5. Rachel has a great recipe for chocolate chip cookies. Her recipe makes a total of 10 cookies. It calls for 2 cups of flour, and 1 ˝ cups of sugar, and 1 egg. How much flour, sugar and eggs will she need to make 30 cookies?
6. Mr. Cole made 75 foul shots in 82 games for his basketball team. How many foul shots will he make in 5 games?