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 Post subject: Algebra help
PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2012 7:41 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:22 pm
Posts: 710
DS isn't keen on the algebra questions we've come across in the first GL pack, eg

Hanif will be x years old 7 years from now. How old was he 7 years ago?


What's the perimeter of this shape (rectangle with chunks out of one side, like a staircase)
2x + 2y
x + y = 2z
xy - zy
x + 2y = z

I've had a quick look on mathsisfun, but that's generally just calculations on there which he's not bad at-it's the using+applying/word problems he struggles to 'see'.

Can anyone point me in the direction of some problems to give him?

 Post subject: Re: Algebra help
PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2012 9:26 pm 

Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 2:15 pm
Posts: 196
Location: Birmingham
How about helping him 'see' them by getting his toys out to illustrate the point, off the top of my head (and I'm sure others will come up with better examples):

If 2 cars and 3 teddies cost £16 and 4 teddies cost £8, how much would it cost me to buy 1 teddy and 1 car.

you could line the things up on your kitchen table and get him to arrange them to reflect the question i.e.
2 cars are put next to 3 teddies, then a big equals sign followed by £16 cash.
Then get him to convert what he sees into an equation, start by sticking a post it note in front of the cars and labelling it 2c, the next post it will have a plus sign on etc.

so 2 cars & 3 teddies = £16 and 4 teddies = £8
becomes 2c + 3d = 16 and 4t = 8

Make it fun - use silly objects like whoppie cushions in the equations.

 Post subject: Re: Algebra help
PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2012 9:40 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 13994
Algebra is just generalised arithmetic - try the problem with numbers instead.

 Post subject: Re: Algebra help
PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2012 8:24 am 

Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8543
Is algebra important in the exam you are preparing for? If it is, I'd buy text book that teaches it, and provides graded questions and problems so that you reach the stage your son needs to be at as painlessly as possible.

e.g. Level Up
Maths on Target

Trouble is I don't know which book in the series to suggest - maybe visit a huge Waterstones which will have all this stuff in stock and then you can see which one you need to buy?

Did the first one have multichoice answers? It's funny it took me a few seconds to see that the answer was x-14, but if this had been listed in multi-choice answers it would have been split-second.

I think Guest 55 is right though - if your son had chosen a number for how x, so long as it was 14 or more, he would have been more easily able to see that the answer is x - 14.

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