"Suzy has eight pairs of red socks and six pairs of blue socks. If her little sister owns nine pairs of purple socks and loses two of Suzy's pairs, how many pairs of socks do the sisters have left?
Solving word problems is an art of transforming the words and sentences into mathematical expressions and then applying conventional algebraic techniques to solve the problem.
Word problems often confuse students simply because the question does not present itself in a ready-to-solve mathematical equation.
In order to familiarize students with these kinds of problems, teachers include word problems in their math curriculum.
However, word problems can present a real challenge if you don't know how to break them down and find the numbers underneath the story.
For instance, suppose you're told that "Shelby worked eight hours MTTh F and six hours WSat".
You would be expected to understand that this meant that she worked eight hours for each of the four days Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday; and six hours for each of the two days Wednesday and Saturday.But figuring out the actual equation can seem nearly impossible. Be advised, however: To learn "how to do" word problems, you will need to practice, practice, practice.The first step to effectively translating and solving word problems is to read the problem entirely.Probably the greatest source of error, though, is the use of variables without definitions.When you pick a letter to stand for something, write down explicitly what that latter is meant to stand for.Begin by determining the scenario the problem wants you to solve. Either way, the word problem provides you with all the information you need to solve it.Once you identify the problem, you can determine the unit of measurement for the final answer.Does "" stand for "Shelby" or for "hours Shelby worked"?If the former, what does this mean, in practical terms?Don't start trying to solve anything when you've only read half a sentence.Try first to get a feel for the whole problem; try first to see what information you have, and then figure out what you still need. Figure out what you need but don't have, and name things. And make sure you know just exactly what the problem is actually asking for.