# Problem Solving Working Backwards

In mathematics we are also developing the idea of inverse operation, using the opposite operation than the one given. One night the King couldn’t sleep, so he went down into the Royal kitchen, where he found a bowl full of mangoes. Later that same night, the Queen was hungry and couldn’t sleep.She, too, found the mangoes and took 1/5 of what the King had left.I was one of those that didn’t understand this strategy because rarely did I read all the information.

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In other words, they need to “undo” each turn to get back, i.e. Once students understand inverse operations, and know that they must start with the solution and work back to the beginning, they will need to learn to recognize the types of problems that require working backwards.

In general, problems that list a series of events or a sequence of steps can be solved by working backwards. Sam ate 2 of them, his dad ate 3 of them and they gave 12 to the neighbor.

Finally, the third Prince ate 1/2 of what was left, leaving only three mangoes for the servants. Try out these lesson and let us know what you think.

MANGO Math Crates provide great games and activities that make students enjoy and understand math.

And as Stephen Covey says in his book, Ask students to then use this information to give directions from the school back home. So if working forwards requires addition, when students work backwards they will need to subtract.

Depending on the age of your students, you may even want to draw a map so they can see clearly that they have to do the opposite as they make their way back home from school. And if they multiply working forwards, they must divide when working backwards.

Working backwards is to start with the final solution and work back one step at a time to get to the beginning.

It may also be helpful for students to understand that this is useful in many aspects of life, not just solving math problems.

Today I want to explain how to teach problem solving by working backwards.

: Before students can learn to recognize when this is a helpful strategy, they must understand what it means.

## Comments Problem Solving Working Backwards

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