20 Tips for Helping Children Become Good Problem Solvers

Solving problems, especially word problems, are always a challenge. To become a good problem solver you need to have a plan or method which is easy to follow to determine what needs to be solved. Then the plan is carried out to solve the problem. The key is to have a plan which works in any math problem solving situation. For students having problems with problem solving, the following 20 tips are provided for helping children become good problem solvers.

Tip 1: When given a problem to solve look for clues to determine what math operation is needed to solve the problem, for example addition, subtraction, etc.

Tip 2: Read the problem carefully as you look for clues and important information. Write down the clues, underline, or highlight the clues.

Tip 3: Look for key words like sum, difference, product, perimeter, area, etc. They will lead you to what operation you need to use. Rewrite the problem if necessary.

Tip 4: Look for what you need to find out, for example: how many will you have left, the total will be, everyone gets red, everyone gets one of each, etc. They will also lead you to the type of operation needed to solve the problem.

Tip 5: Use variable symbols, such as “X” for missing information.

Tip 6: Eliminate all non-essential information by drawing a line through this distracting information.

Tip 7: Addition problems use words like sum, total, in all, and perimeter.

Tip 8: Subtraction problems use words like difference, how much more, and exceeds.

Tip 9: Multiplication problems use words like product, total, area, and times.

Tip 10: Division problems use words like share, distribute, quotient, and average.

Tip 11: Draw sketches, drawings, and models to see the problem.

Tip 12: Use guess and check techniques to see if you are on the right track. Continue reading 20 Tips for Helping Children Become Good Problem Solvers

Grow and Grow up

  • Grow means live when we talk about plants:
    • Cactus plants grow in Arizona.
    • I saw palm trees growing in Floria.
    • Does bamboo grow in cold climates?

    We use grow as a transitive verb to show that someone plants and raises flowers or vegetable plants.

    • Jane grows herbs and vegetables in her garden.
    • My uncle grows roses.
    • The farmers in Long Island grow grapes which are used to make wine.

    We also use grow to mean that some living thing is becoming bigger or older. We can also use grow to talk about a business or a project that is becoming bigger or more successful

    • The sunflower plants grow quickly in July and August.
    • The puppies are growing and are almost ready for their new homes.
    • Jack’s company is growing so much they have hired a lot of new staff.

    We use grow up to talk about children becoming physically bigger and emotionally mature. Keep in mind that grow up is only used for people, not animals nor plants.

    • grew up in New York, so I love this city!
    • When Tommy Jr. grows up, he wants to be a doctor like his father.
    • Toshi was born in Tokyo, but grew up in Texas.

Un mal comportamiento!!!!


  • Conoce la causa de ese mal comportamiento y actuar sobre ella. Si necesita ser considerado dale atención. Si necesita mitigar el dolor ayúdale a ello. Si necesita reafirmar su propio yo, dale autonomía para que lo haga.
  • Evita los castigos y no pierdas los nervios, pues con ellos el niño: por un lado recibe atención, por otro refuerzas con tu ejemplo conductas inapropiadas.
  • Establece normas claras, es bueno hacer las normas en colaboración con el niño, para que aprenda que son un consenso y no una imposición. Díselas al niño, anótalas donde pueda verlas. Y cumple esas normas.
  • Utiliza el refuerzo positivo cuando el niño haga la conducta deseada. En ocasiones cuando el niño se comporta bien, no le hacemos caso.
  • Debemos dejar de prestarle atención cuando se porte mal y darle atención cuando su conducta sea la adecuada. Cuando el niño no consiga solventar su necesidad o malestar emocional con una mala conducta, sólo tiene una opción darse por vencido.

Celia Rodríguez y Educapeques

Instead or instead of

  • Instead is generally used with the preposition of. We say instead of, which means one thing or person will replace another thing or person. After instead of we can use a noun or a gerund (VerbING):
    • I think I will have tea instead of coffee this morning.
    • Instead of our weekly meeting, the boss is taking us out to lunch on Friday!
    • I’m tired of eating pizza every week. Instead of pizza, let’s go out for sushi.
    • I’m going to the conference instead of my boss. He’s too busy.
    • Instead of studying, let’s go see a movie. I need a break.

    It’s possible to use instead as an adverb without of. Instead when used this way usually begins or ends a clause. The meaning is alternatively:

    • I don’t feel like coffee this morning. I think I will have tea instead.
    • The weekly meeting is cancelled this week. The boss is taking us out to lunch instead.
    • I’m tired of eating pizza every week. Let’s go out for sushi instead.
    • The boss is too busy to go to the conference, so I am going instead.
    • I need a break from studying. Let’s go see a movie instead.