Some of the most common errors I have seen teaching algebra occur because students simply cannot accurately “translate” words into mathematical models, or because they do not understand math “jargon” such as evaluate or simplify. I think this problem could easily be avoided, however, if one or two days were spent focusing on these skills. We cannot expect students to walk into class with a clear understanding of “math words” if they were never explicitly taught. Help your kids understand algebra vocabulary with these free guided notes pages!
Teach the Language of Algebra:
Math is a language we must teach students, just as Spanish or French must be taught and learned. No one would expect a student to walk into Spanish 1 already knowing how to translate English phrases or sentences into Spanish!
Below are some helpful handouts I have used to give my students a chance to think about words or phrases that have specific meanings in Algebra, as well as a review of “math words” that they need to understand before they can correctly answer a math problem.
Ultimately, the goal in Algebra is to be able to problem solve by writing a mathematical model to represent a real life situation.
Call them what you will, “word problems,” “story problems,” “application problems,” etc. but the bottom line is this: how to work through solving these types of problems must be taught. And so I hope the following resources are helpful to you and your students!
To access the Algebra Vocabulary worksheets, click the links below:
Looking for additional practice with translating algebra vocabulary? Grab this set of FREE Algebraic Expressions Pages!
If your looking for a more in depth Algebra resource to cover more than just vocabulary, you may be interested in my collection of meaningful lessons and fun games: Algebra Essentials.
This provides introductory lessons for important math concepts to help kids actually understand Algebra rather than memorize rules or formulas.
Learn more about Algebra Essentials HERE or purchase the collection using the link below.
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