Sunday, July 29, 2012

Translating Words Into Math

Being able to translate word phrases into mathematical expressions is a key skill.  Students need to be able to decode word problems correctly so they can solve them correctly.  I have been pinning lots of ideas for this skill onto my Middle School Math Board.

I pretty much combined a few that I liked to create the next 2 pages in my students' interactive notebooks.  I decided to have the kids make large operation symbols using construction paper (using the dot for multiplication instead of the dreaded x, of course!).  They will write all the phrases for each operation on the corresponding symbol.  I also included what I call "Turn Around Words" and "Parentheses Words".

I pretty much just drew the math symbols by free-hand.  Afterwards, I decided to make and print out some templates for my students to use (as a time-saver).  I also made parentheses to cut and paste in for the "Parentheses Words" as well as an equals sign.

 You can get the templates at my Teacher's Notebook Store or at my TeachersPayTeachers Store.  Print them on cardstock or mount them on cardboard and you're good to go.  (Don't worry, you won't need to print one of each for every one of your students...while some work on addition, have others do multiplication and so on.)


  1. It's ideas like this that are my favorite. You know, the simple yet genius ones! I'm pinning this one! :)


    Setting Sail in 7th Grade

  2. I love the "turn around words" part. I'm definitely stealing this for my 6th graders!

    1. Yeah, the "turn around words" are very helpful.

  3. THANK YOU! I am a first year math teacher, and this is awesome!