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Looking for word problems maths books

(21 Posts)
Arkadia Thu 26-Oct-17 14:21:31

Hi there,

we already have "Maths Plus Word Problems 3" which is fine, but rather on the easy side. Getting level 4 is not easiest on Amazon, so I thought I would try one of the Kumon ones, but the problem is that I don't know which one.
As I cannot find excerpts of any of these books on the net, can someone share some pics or a description derived from personal experience? I don't want to buy something that is too easy and would like to avoid stuff that is too difficult.

In particular I am looking for info on Einemann's "Maths Plus Word Problems" 4 and 5 (according to the reviews on Amazon I should skip 4 as too similar to 3) and "Word Problems (Kumon Math Workbooks)" Grade 3,4 and 5.
In particular I wonder if the Kumon books are too American, i.e. full of quarters, dimes, pounds, inches, quart and so on.

Any other suggestion on maths word problems is welcome (I would prefer printed books rather than online stuff).

Arkadia Mon 30-Oct-17 15:35:58

Bumping, just in case..

lucytreehouse Wed 01-Nov-17 15:29:56

Singapore Maths Challenging Word Problems is excellent

Arkadia Wed 01-Nov-17 17:33:57

Thanks Lucy. I had heard of them, but never considered them.
Do you have advice re: levels?

BTW, today I ordered Kumon 3 from Amazon. There was a second hand copy coming from the States at £1.50. I thought it was worth the gamble :D

Norestformrz Wed 01-Nov-17 17:35:55

Have a look at the NRich website for free resources and the White Rose Maths hub

Arkadia Wed 01-Nov-17 17:42:31

I know, but I prefer hard copies for this. I feel books beget insight. ;)

Norestformrz Wed 01-Nov-17 18:06:12

You could always print them hmm

Personally I’m not impressed by the Singapore maths books I was very disappointed

irvineoneohone Wed 01-Nov-17 18:17:52

I know I shouldn't be posting on your thread(I know you hate me!), but if you like work books, your best bet imo is go to the big book store (waterstones/whsmith in my local) and have a look at actual workbooks by yourself or let your dd choose. There are so many.
Personally, I don't rate Kumon, they are too simple/too easy/ too general, imo, not rearlly expanding and progressing knowledge.
I would recommend as mrz did, if you really want something that would make difference in understanding maths and go further.
If you like workbook like website, IXL is one of them, and I totally recommend it to anybody who likes repetition to get understanding of concept. (Have been using it for last 4 years and totally worth paying around 5 pounds a months imo.)

Norestformrz Wed 01-Nov-17 18:40:08


Arkadia Wed 01-Nov-17 18:50:16

Thanks mrz. Will have a look.

Irvine, what nonsense, why should I hate you. I thought you hated me.

What we need is not so much something before expanding, but, for now at least, something before practicing. I never realized how difficult word problems can be. So far the most difficult ones I have found are on Khan, and that's when the penny dropped. The maths word problems 3 I mentioned is probably too easy, with one exception, some time problems which are pretty much beyond both my DD (and Khan). Anyway, so far we are progressing with that as I have come to realize there is always opportunity to learn a new expression ( today's was the meaning of "to win by..." - we don't watch much sport in the house grin), so I am still pleased with my purchase.

Norestformrz Wed 01-Nov-17 18:56:09

The White Rose materials are free and very similar to those children will meet in school and in the SATs

irvineoneohone Wed 01-Nov-17 19:14:27

Umm, if I hated you, why would I try to say something it may sound horrible to you? I always thought you are a fellow foreign parents trying to do best for children in foreign country like me. I can see you don't like my comments, but at least I always try to be genuine and try to help if I am commenting on MN.

My ds had difficulty with word problems too. And we explored a lot. Tbh, instant marking online ones were the best imo. My ds is really good at them now, but he went through crying over doing a skill again and again and again without giving up for ages. Once he answered 100+ questions in a row to achieve 100% on IXL, even I told him to stop because he was struggling and getting upset. Now it seems like a distant dream. Time word problem is hard, but once you get it, you get it.
Good luck for you.

irvineoneohone Wed 01-Nov-17 19:30:50

I think word problems on Khan aren't that difficult for target age. Are you using right age group/grade for them?
Not sure about how age group works for Scotland, but grade1 = yr1/yr2,
grade2 = yr2/yr3 in English system, as far as I know. (Maybe wrong.)

Arkadia Wed 01-Nov-17 19:42:22

DD2 tomorrow should be finishing grade 3, and even I thought some of their word problems are hard. Funnily enough, DD1 hasn't found them (yet) in grade 4. But that's probably because she is now wiser (and already went through the struggle last year...). Anyway, more practice is definitely needed for both, if anything to enrich their vocabulary. DD2 the other day couldn't do a very easy one. It transpired she hadn't understood the word "difference" as in "numerical difference". Instead she was looking for all sorts of differences grin.

irvineoneohone Wed 01-Nov-17 19:52:41

If I remember correctly, your dd1 is yr2 age and dd2 is reception age in English system, I believe?
If dd1 doing grade4 = yr4/5 and dd2 doing grade3 = yr3/4, it's only natural to find some of them hard? They seems to be doing great, imo.

Arkadia Wed 01-Nov-17 20:09:16

No, they are a year older. Yes, they ARE doing great, but word problems is their weakest skill at the moment, so it is only natural to practice them. (And clocks for the younger one, but that's easier to practice ;) ).

irvineoneohone Wed 01-Nov-17 20:25:17

Best strategy for word problem imo is, RUCSAC(read/underline/calculate/solve/answer/check) and drawing diagram, for everything, but especially time problem.

Arkadia Wed 01-Nov-17 21:01:54

Yes, it certainly helps (learnt the hard way). I find it fascinating to see how a child's mind works. I can't remember how I learnt to deal with word problems and to me this is all "new".

irvineoneohone Wed 01-Nov-17 21:16:52

No, I don't think there's anything new about rucsac and drawing diagram. I certainly learned similar way, it's just worded in more fancy way for children to remember what to do. It's very basic, imo.

lucytreehouse Mon 15-Jan-18 01:36:11

Sorry for replying so late. Singapore grade 3 is uk year 4, but the problems in this book are not easy, really interesting and challenging.
What I like about these books is that they teach you how to solve the problem and then give quite a bit of the tasks to practice, whereas many uk books only do the testing.
Singapore method is more systematic.

Arkadia Mon 15-Jan-18 09:29:27

Thanks Lucy, although 900 bucks is a bit over the budget I had in mind :D

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