Solving Word Problems With Multiplication: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:04 Multiplication & Word Problems
  • 0:49 Example 1
  • 1:48 Example 2
  • 2:51 Example 3
  • 3:35 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Kelley Lipke

Kelley has been teaching middle school for six years and has a master's degree in educational administration.

In this lesson you'll learn to solve word problems involving multiplication. You'll find out what words in a problem indicate multiplication as well as solve some practice problems.

Multiplication & Word Problems

Sadie stops at the store to buy frisbees. Each frisbee costs $2.50 and Sadie wants to buy 5 of them. How much money will she spend?

This is an example of a multiplication word problem. There are a few words to look for in a word problem that will help you determine if multiplication is needed:

  • each
  • multiplied by
  • of
  • per
  • product
  • times

Our sample word problem includes the word ''each,'' meaning we need to multiply $2.50 by 5. This will give us the total amount Sadie will spend.


Sadie will spend $12.50 on 5 frisbees.

Let's look at some more examples.

Example 1

Tom delivers newspapers. If he can deliver 62 newspapers each hour, how many papers can he deliver in 8 hours?

Can you spot the clue in the problem that indicates multiplication?

The clue word is ''each.''

We need to multiply 62 by 8 to find the answer. But before we do that, let's try estimating our product first.

Estimation allows us to get an approximate answer before actually solving a problem. This lets us know if our actual answer makes sense. One way to estimate is to round. We can round 62 to 60, making it much easier for us to get an estimate. We know that 60 times 8 is 480. Therefore, our answer should be close to 480.


Is 496 close to our estimate of 480? Yes, which means our actual answer is correct.

Tom can deliver 496 newspapers in 8 hours.

Example 2

Maddie works at an ice cream shop. If she earns $8.25 per hour, how much money will she make after a 6-hour shift?

Can you spot the clue in the problem?

The word ''per'' indicates multiplication.

We can use the distributive property to solve this problem. The distributive property allows us to break down a difficult problem into more easily solved, shorter problems.

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