The Password Protected Problem Solving Page has lots of great videos that should take all the mystery out of problem solving using base ten blocks. People can't believe how easy it is especially if they struggled thru algebra trying to memorize rules about when to use the opposite addend or when to divide and when to multiply...or worse, they've heard things like, "when x walks across the equals sign it turns negative..."
Before we go any further understand that MOST of this site is FREE and you should have spent some time on my blog of math and this website before entering here. Here is the FREE problem solving page.
If you have gone through all of that and some of the blog posts and are wondering how to do ones that have negative numbers you have come to the right place...
If you want to see how to teach your little kids to solve problems like this get yourself a password & click enter.
You'll need a passsword when you click enter. Buying one is easy, just click The Password Info Tab, if you don't already have one. If you do have one just click enter and type it in.
For those who don't, here is a short vid detailing what's on the other side. <Click full screen for best results.>
As you can see yet more HOURS of video, links to blog posts with more explanation--everything you need to teach yourself (or your children or students as the case may be) how EASY solving for "x" is. We play games and have fun, use basic concepts and base ten blocks to take the "hard" out of it.
Again: this page alone is worth the price of a Module.
"Almost all creativity involves purposeful play." ~Abraham Maslow American psychologist 1908-1970
"Whoever wants to understand much must play much." ~Gottfried Benn German physician 1886-1956
"Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning." ~Fred Rogers American television personality 1928-2003
"People tend to forget that play is serious." ~David Hockney Contemporary British painter
"Do not…keep children to their studies by compulsion but by play." ~Plato Greek philosopher 427-347 BCE
"Necessity may be the mother of invention, but play is certainly the father." ~Roger von Oech Contemporary American creativity guru
More education quotes.