The Word Problem Workstation
Word problems are an essential part of the math curriculum. Word problems are notoriously difficult for students. Therefore, besides having a problem of the day routine, teachers should have a word problem workstation. The goal of the word problem workstation is that students have the opportunity to practice word problems in their zone of proximal development. There is a hierarchy to word problems, and it is important to assess and find out if there are any gaps in students' understanding and then to plan for those in the workstation. There should be a variety of opportunities for working with, modeling, and strategizing about word problems. Students should solve word problems, write word problems, sort word problems, and match word problems with models, strategies, and solutions. Students should do these activities alone, with partners, and in groups. When teaching students to solve word problems it is important to teach them through the cycle of engagement.