How to Help Kids Solve Tricky Math Homework Online

Jun 17, 2020 | Killarney

Does your child find math homework tricky? Since schools migrated to online learning, our inquiries for online math homework help went up significantly so we know that getting help during this time has been a struggle. 

If you or your child are looking for some math homework help, there are a variety of tools in your math tool kit that can help but sometimes you just don't realize it. Let's take a look at a couple math problems, using a variety of math skills to explain what we mean.

Question: There are 850 pages in a book. How many pages are read when Carol has read 23% of the book?

First, let's use estimation to get an idea of what the answer might be. Estimation is a great tool to help students ensure their calculated answer is in the right ball park in the event they make an error during their calculations. In this case, 25% is very close to 23%. You may recall that percent means "for each 100" so this means that we could estimate 25% of 900 pages such that the answer should be close to 225. Will the answer be more or less? The answer will be less because we have over estimated by using 25% instead of 23% and 900 pages instead of 850.

Now let's use our percent tool. We have 800 pages so we can do 23, 8 times because we have read 23 pages out of every 100. This is 184 pages. For the remaining 50 pages, we can do half of 23 because 50 is half of 100. Half of 23 is 11.5 pages. We know this because half of 20 is 10 and half of 3 is 1.5. Therefore all together Carol has read 195.5 pages. All of these tools are mental math tools which lets you calculate the answer in your head!  

Question: Danielle bought 4 movie tickets for $8.00 each and 3 bags of popcorn for $2.50 each. How much change will Danielle get from $50.00.

This is a multi-step problem where we should begin with the facts that are presented.

Step 1: 4 movie tickets cost $8.00 each so 4 x $8.00 = $32.00 

Step 2: 3 bags of popcorn cost $2.50 each so 3 x $2.50 = $7.50 

Step 3: Danielle spent $32.00 + $7.50 on tickets and popcorn for a total of $39.50.

Step 4: Danielle gives the cashier $50.00 so $50.00 - $39.50 = $10.50 in change

In this problem, we have used a variety of multiplication facts (4x8, 3x2, 3x 50), addition, subtraction and place value. For Step 4, for students struggling with the value of money value, it's the perfect example to look at our up to and over 10 trick. $39.50 is the same as 3950 cents. We need 50 more cents to get to 4000 cents (or $40.00) and then 1000 more cents to get to 5000 cents (or $50.00). That means $50.00 is 1050 cents or $10.50 away from $39.50 and that's how much change we get. This is another mental math trick we teach!

It's easy to forget what math tools are available for problem solving and math homework when we aren't looking. Here at Mathnasium, we teach all the skills that we've determined your student needs to develop based on a very complete assessment. By coming into our centre, your child will not only learn and master new skills, but they will be challenged to develop their mental math and maintain mastery of their math skills.

With summer around the corner, math homework may not be at the forefront of all students' minds. However, compact learning during this time can help them catch up or get ahead before the new school year starts. Continued mental activity is like exercise for the brain. Studying mathematics can keep the brain sharp, active and ready to return to a learning environment in the Fall with great confidence. We continue to operate Sunday through Thursday throughout the summer so come in for a visit.

If you're a summer student, our program will complement your course requirements by filling gaps in prerequisite knowledge not to mention math homework help. We can't wait to see you and help you succeed! Call us at 825-509-2143 or email [email protected] to set up a FREE assessment today.

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