How to Help Your Child Tackle 5th-Grade Math Word Problems

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    If math is similar to a skyscraper, then word problems are the elevators; the higher you go, the broader your exposure and understanding of its concepts.

    On the 5th floor of this building, the children are expected to understand how to interpret and solve word problems, think logically and creatively, as well as apply several math concepts simultaneously. 

    Utilizing math word problems 5th grade in your daily learning routine is a great way to help young learners build confidence, and hone their critical thinking and reading skills. It also helps tutors gauge their students’ actual understanding of math concepts and provide instruction and support where necessary.

    5th-grade math word problems are a bit more complex than early-grade math problems because it combines math concepts learnt at the elementary level. They might be complex, but not impossible to tackle with the right tutor, routine, and mindset.

    The Right Tutor

    Getting the right tutor to help your child excel at 5th-grade math common core word problems can be daunting, but not if you know how and where to look.

    The internet is the ideal place to start when looking for competent tutors for your child. Various websites offer math lessons online, but Brighterly happens to be one of the best.

    Brighterly is a math learning website that infuses gameplay into the learning process to teach math concepts to your child effectively. It offers live one-on-one classes with professional tutors that teach 5th-grade math word problems online. 

    You can rest assured that your child is in good hands as Brighterly tutors use innovative teaching techniques and worksheets tailored to your child’s needs.

    Homeschoolers aren’t left behind as this platform also allows you to download 5th-grade math word problems pdf worksheets to practice with your child at your leisure!

    The Right Mindset

    One of the essential ingredients to tackling word problems is patience. Word problems may seem overwhelming at first glance as you may not have all the information you need, but with gradual steps and logical thinking, you will uncover the solution. 

    A positive outlook is the best mindset to have when dealing with word problems. We have all battled math anxiety at least once in our lives, so it is crucial to avoid passing this fear on to your child. The best way to foster positive thinking in your child is to motivate them. Using phrases like “You did great”. “We can solve this” helps build confidence in their ability to solve the problem.

    The Right Routine

    Children are creatures of habit and like adults, benefit from routines they are familiar with. According to Vince Lombardi, a famous American football coach, Only perfect practice makes perfect. Having a fixed daily routine for practising 5th-grade common core math word problems boosts their efficiency and confidence in problem-solving.

    To make the practice perfect, it is crucial to arrange and design your child’s routine when your kids are well-rested and alert to aid knowledge assimilation.

    Examples of Popular 5th-grade common core math word problems

    Common core math word problems 5th grade are multi-layered and require children to think outside the box to arrive at the answer. It is advisable for children to express their ideas and thoughts with pictures to map out their plans and solve each problem.

    Word problems in 5th grade typically cover common core math concepts like addition, subtraction, division, multiplication, time, money, place value, and fractions.

    Here are a few word problems you can practice with your youngster at home or during lessons.

    Mixed Four Operations

    These problems involve the basic four operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The aim of this set of problems is to improve the mastery of the child’s knowledge of basic math concepts. 


    1. On a normal day, there are 300 planes taking off from the airport but the airport is a lot rowdier during Christmas. During the Christmas holidays, about 400 planes take off every day from the airport.
    1. The airport opens for 12 hours each day during the Christmas holidays; how many planes take off per hour?
    2. On average, each plane takes 200 passengers and 5 tons of cargo. How many passengers depart from the airport every day during the Christmas holidays?
    3. Compared to a normal day, how many more passengers depart the airport during the Christmas holidays?
    4. There are 60 kittens for sale at a pet shop. 12 are black and 28 are orange. How many kittens are striped?

    Estimating and Rounding Word Problems

    These problems encourage children to use rounding and estimating to arrive at approximate answers to questions. It utilizes basic operations like addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.


    1. There are about 650 houses in the area. The average family size is 5 people. Estimate the number of people living in the area.
    2.  In a village, there are 500 families. If there are an average of two children attending elementary school from each family and each school accommodates 100 children. What is the minimum number of elementary schools needed in the region?

    Fractions and Decimal Word Problems

    These problems are an interesting mix as they involve the addition, subtraction, division and multiplication of fractions, mixed numbers, and decimals. Children would learn 


    1. It is harvest season at Patty’s farm. She has two corn fields and the total area of the two fields is 5 ½ acres. The big field yields 3 ⅖ corn while the small field yields 2 ⅓ corn. What is the total yield of corn?
    2. Mary took out 5 glasses and poured juice from the pitcher. The capacity of each glass is 5/20 liter. If there is enough juice for 6 glasses, how much juice was there?
    3. Judy is baking croissants. She has 15 pounds of dough. If each croissant requires ⅛ pounds of dough, how many croissants can she make?

    Volume Word Problems

    5th grade math volume word problems focus on measurements of volume and capacity and are typically in customary units such as pints, cups, milliters, liters, etc.


    1. Before a party, Emily bought a tray of 12 bottles, each having a capacity of 12 oz. There are 15 guests. If each guest had 1 cup of water, would there be enough water for all the guests?
    2. Amy made a pot of chili sauce for Thanksgiving dinner. She used 6 cups of water to make the soup. She poured the soup into 10 small soup bowls. How much water (in oz) is used for each small soup bowl?
    3. Jodie mixed 2 cartons of orange juice,5 cans of cocktail fruits and 4 bottles of soda water to make a fruit punch for his housewarming party. The can of cocktail fruits are 2 pints each. Each carton of orange juice is 1 gallon  and 2 quartz. Each soda bottle is 5 pints each. How much (in gallons) fruit punch did Jodie make?

    Probability word problems

    5th grade math probability word problems provide children with the understanding of probability. The students are expected to calculate simple probability by expressing them as fractions or decimals. Probability is usually expressed as likely, unlikely, and certain.


    1. A glass jar contains a total of 20 marbles. The jar has red marbles and blue marbles. There are 16 red marbles in the jar. What is the probability of picking a blue marble?
    2. A number cube has 6 sides. The sides are numbered 1 to 6. If the cube is thrown once, what is the probability of getting the number 6?


    If you want to increase your child’s ability to solve 5th grade word problems quickly, enrolling them at Brighterly is the right call to make. Register now to kickstart their math learning journey. 

    We hope these tips help. Good luck!

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