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Mar20

Practice Solving Multiplication Problems

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This post will teach you how to analyze, process and solve problems that can be solved by using multiplication. At Smartick, we believe that a student understands and knows math when they can solve problems correctly. This is why we are going to analyze five different multiplication problems.

Multiplication Problem #1
At Ricardo’s farm, there are three stables that have the same number of horses: five horses in the north stable, five horses in the south stable and five horses in the central stable. How many horses are there in total at Ricardo’s farm?

These types of problems are the first kinds that we will analyze in order to learn the concept of multiplication. We have five horses in the north stable, five in the south stable and five more in the central stable. In order to calculate the total number of horses that we have, we would have to add 5+5+5, and this is exactly the same as doing multiplication:

 5 x 3 = 15

In total there are fifteen horses.

Multiplication Problem #2

This week, my mom had ten guests over at her house so there was a lot of trash to take out. As a result, she had to go out three times to recycle glass. If she took six glass containers with her to recycle each time she went out…How many glass containers did she recycle in total?

If we compare the level of difficulty, this problem is about the same level of difficulty as the one we saw before, but knowing which mathematical operation we need to use here isn’t as obvious. Let’s have a look at the numbers we have here: ten guests at the house, three trips to recycle and each time she took six glass containers with her. In this case, we don’t need the number of guests to solve the problem because it doesn’t have to do with the total number of recycled glass containers. In her first trip, she took six glass containers, in the second, she took another six and in the third, she took another six. Simply put, she took 6+6+6, which is exactly the same as doing multiplication:

6 x 3 = 18

She recycled 18 glass containers in total.

Multiplication Problem #3

I want to visit my friends, Alvin and Diana. If I know that the bus that goes to Alvin’s town costs nine dollars, and the one that goes to Diana’s town costs three times more, help me find out how much it costs to go to Diana’s town.

In this problem, we see the “times more” concept. So, the bus that goes to Diana’s town costs three times more than the bus that goes to Alvin’s town. This means that in order to find out how much the bus that goes to Diana’s town costs, we have to multiply the price of the bus that goes to Alvin’s town by 3:

9 x 3 = 27

The bus that goes to Diana’s town costs 27 dollars.

Multiplication Problem #4

A runner is training to participate in the Boston Marathon. He calculated that he runs eight laps for every hour on the training track. Knowing that today he is going to train for two hours, calculate the total number of laps the runner will run at the track.

This problem gives a different piece of information: eight laps per hour. This means that for every hour, he runs eight laps. The problem tells us that he will be running for two hours, and in the first hour, he’d have run eight laps and in the second, another eight laps. The laps that he ran in total are 8+8, which is exactly the same as doing multiplication:

8 x 2 = 16

The runner ran a total of sixteen laps.

Multiplication Problem #5

Ms. White’s stationary store is celebrating its opening anniversary by making give-away boxes. In each box, there is a pen and a mechanical pencil. Knowing that there are five types of pens and four types of mechanical pencils…calculate the number of different boxes that she is going to give away.

This type of problem is the most complicated kind that we’ll find in multiplication problems. They are combination problems and they refer to a combination of elements. The elements need to be combined and we want to know how many different ways we can do something.  For example, we can choose one of the pens and use that pen to combine with each one of the different types of mechanical pencils. So, there are four different combinations that we can make with the first pen. Then, when we take the next type of pen and combine it with each one of the four mechanical pencils, we’ll also get four different combinations. The same thing would happen with the remaining three types of pens, which means that the total number of combinations of pens and mechanical pencils is 4+4+4+4+4, and that’s exactly the same as doing multiplication:

4 x 5 = 20

In total, there are 20 different give-away box combinations.

That ties up this week’s post. If you want to learn more elementary math, register now and try Smartick for free!

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