Word Problem Vocabulary Unit-Aviva Lee

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Word Problem Vocabulary Unit-Aviva Lee

Students learn clues for determining which operation to use with word problems.

  1. Students make pocket foldables with four pockets from large construction paper. They put one operation on each pocket at the top and list the clue words on the front of the pocket.

  2. Write word problems on slips of card stock. As a class, students decide where problems go and identify clue words. Writing problems on an engaging topic helps. I wrote mine about snakes and showed them pictures of Paco.

  3. Students sort word problems on slips of card stock into the proper pockets. They can work with partners.

  4. As they improve, students can compete on teams to sort problems into the pockets.

  5. Students write their own word problems for ADD and SUBTRACT.

  6. Students write their own word problems for MULTIPLY and DIVIDE.

If students do not “get” multiplication and division, do steps 2-6 with addition and subtraction only, try the following lesson, then repeat 2-6 with multiplication and division.

Foldable Vocabulary

ADDITION: all together, in all, total, sum

SUBTRACTION: difference, more than, less than, fewer, left

MULTIPLICATION: each, product

DIVISION: each, quotient

Math Cubes Lesson for Multiplication and Division

Use linking cubes to teach students multiplication and division concepts.

  1. Start with 1 ten rod. Instruct students to snap it in half for 2x5. Then make 5 equal groups for 5x2. Collect 1 pair and do the same for multiples of 8. Point out 1x10 and 1x8 as well.

  2. Give 2 more cubes and have students find as many multiples of 12 as they can.

  3. Give students 2 more 10 rods. Practice counting by 10s and show 10x2 and 10x3.

  4. Build multiples of 20 and 30. Point out commutative property (4x5=5x4).

  5. Let students work as a group to make all multiples of 24 and reward when done.


  1. Start with 2 rods of 10 for each student. Write 20/5 on the board and have students count cubes off in groups of 5. Ask “How many groups?” Tell students 4 is the quotient. Do 20/4 and point out fact families. Have students suggest other numbers and point out remainder.

  2. Give out another 10 rod and do 30/5 and 30/6. Point out fact families. Have students suggest other numbers.

  3. Give out a fourth 10 rod. Students count by 10s to 40 and show 40/10 and 40/4. Then they can suggest other numbers to divide by. They should be cluing into the fact families by now.

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