In This Chapter
Dispelling myths about word problems
Knowing the four steps to solving a word problem
Jotting down simple word equations that condense the important information
Writing more-complex word equations
Plugging numbers into the word equations to solve the problem
Attacking more-complex word problems with confidence
The very mention of word problems — or story problems, as they're sometimes called — is enough to send a cold shiver of terror into the bones of the average math student. Many would rather swim across a moat full of hungry crocodiles than “figure out how many bushels of corn Farmer Brown picked” or “help Aunt Sylvia decide how many cookies to bake.” But word problems help you understand the logic behind setting up equations in real-life situations, making math actually useful — even if the scenarios in the word problems ...