How to Help Students Master the Multi-step Word Problems?

How to Help Students Master the Multi-step Word Problems?

Multi-step word problems are quite a tricky subject and are not one that can be easily taught and understood. To have a better grasp of this topic, you will need to learn some out of the box methods which parents and teachers can use to deconstruct this topic and make it easily accessible to the students/children. Due to its complexity and difficulty in teaching or learning, a good strategy is to embed the topic in the curriculum, so it runs through the year.

In this piece, we will be examining the different methods which can be used to teach Multi-level word problems successfully. Parents and teachers should note that the easiest way to make this work is a partnership between them and continuous cycles of teaching and learning, which they must engage in. Here are four methods to teach multi-level word problems:

Single Word Problems

Students would need to learn how to solve single word problems before attempting more complex multi-level questions. Most students tend to rush into solutions without adequately understanding the question or the context. An excellent way to solve this is by removing all numbers from the question and allowing your students to understand the question first before adding the numbers and allowing them to find a solution.

Lumos Learning

Lumos Learning offers grade & standard specific multi-step word problems to practice. It also has an advanced educational bot (multi-step bot) which helps the students master the multi-step word problems in an interactive way. They will also have access to solved questions and see how these questions were broken down in each step and how the resulting solution was obtained.

Question Breakdown

Breaking down questions into detailed steps will help students understand the question individually before putting it together as a whole. Multi-level word problems can be seen as separate single-level word problems joined together to create one complex word problem. Teaching your students to break down these complex questions into various simpler processes will make them easier to interpret and solve. It will also help them avoid skipping and statements that should be translated into equations. The more students get used to steps, the more they will break down questions before solving, thereby reducing errors when solving and increasing understanding.

Representation Method

Representing the questions in easy to understand mediums will make it easier for students to visualize the problem they’ve been asked to solve. Using graphs, diagrams, tables, grids, and other forms of representation is the way to teach with this method. These representations will give students a visual problem to work with and make it easier for them to get the right answers. Also, asking them to use the parameters given in the word problems makes it harder to fall off track as they would when using just numbers. For example, 20 Oranges and 5 Apples should be interpreted as 20 oranges + 5 Apples= 25 Fruits.


Teaching multi-level word problems can be a challenge to both parents and teachers. This is why you will need to apply the creative solutions we have listed above. There is no one route to the correct answer, but applying each of these methods individually or as a pair will help improve your child’s chances of grasping the topic. Parents need to work hand in hand with teachers to ensure that their children receive lessons at home to boost what has been taught in school. This is where programs like Lumos Learning can be of assistance.

Sign your child up today and watch as their learning experience is changed forever. The internet has made it possible for us to deliver quality service in real-time, so why not take advantage of it. The practice tests and questions have been thoroughly screened by top-notch teaching professionals, so rest assured your child is getting the best.




Aronkola Timileyin

Aronkola Timileyin

Aronkola Timileyin is a medical student and a freelance writer. He has been writing professionally since 2017, and he has worked with different organizations, including Lumos learning and Techcoffee, and most of his work has been published online. He enjoys watching movies and swimming in his spare time.