# Second Grade Math: Solving Word Problems

Food is a sure winner when motivating students, including second-graders. Menu math offers real-world problems to help students boost their functional math skills. Students can practice their menu skills in your class or at home and then apply what they have learned when they eat at a restaurant. Suggestion: Have students solve the problems on the free printable worksheets below, then create a mock restaurant in the classroom to put their new problem-solving skills to use in a role-playing exercise. For your convenience, the answers are printed on a duplicate printable that is the second page of each PDF link.

01
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## Favorite Foods

In this worksheet, students will solve word problems related to foods they love: hot dogs, french fries, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, soda, ice cream cones, and milkshakes. Given a brief menu with prices for each item, students will answer questions such as: "What is the total cost of an order of French fries, a cola, and an ice cream cone?" in the blank spaces provided next to the questions on the worksheet.

02
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## Calculating Change

This printable provides similar problems to those in worksheet No. 1. Students will also answer questions such as: "Ellen purchases an ice cream cone, an order of french fries, and a hamburger. If she had \$10.00, how much money will she have left?" Use problems like these to help students learn and understand the concept of change.

03
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## Calculating Total Cost

On this worksheet, students will get more practice in menu math with problems such as: "If David wanted to buy a milkshake and a taco, how much would it cost him?" and "If Michele wanted to buy a hamburger and a milkshake, how much money would she need?" These kinds of problems help students with reading skills—they have to read the menu items and questions before they can solve the problems—as well as basic math skills.

04
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## More Total Cost Practice

In this worksheet, students continue to identify items and prices, and then solve problems such as: "What are the total cost of a cola and an order of french fries?" This provides a great opportunity to review the important math term, "total," with students. Explain that finding a total requires adding two or more numbers.

05
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## Adding Tax

In this worksheet, students continue to practice menu problems and list their answers in the provided blank spaces. The worksheet also throws in a few challenging questions such as: "What is the total cost of an order of French-fries?" The cost, of course, would be \$1.40 without tax. But, take the problem to the next step by introducing the concept of tax.

Students at the second-grade level usually don't know the operation needed to determine the tax on an item, so tell them the tax that they would need to add—depending on the tax rate in your city and state—and have them add that amount to get the true total cost of a serving of french fries.

06
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## Why Do Some Things Cost More Than Others?

In this worksheet, students solve such menu math problems as: "Paul wants to buy a deluxe cheeseburger, a hamburger, and a pizza slice. How much money will he need?" Use questions like these to spark a discussion about menu items. You might ask students questions such as: "What does a hamburger cost?" and "What does a deluxe cheeseburger cost?" and "Why does the deluxe cheeseburger cost more?" This also gives you the chance to discuss the concept of "more," which can be a challenging idea for second-graders.

07
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## Practice With Play Money

Students continue to work out basic menu math problems and fill their answers in the provided blank spaces. Enhance the lesson by using real money of fake money (which you can purchase at most discount stores). Have students count out the amount of money they would need for various items and then add the bills and coins to determine the total cost of two or more menu items.

08
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## Subtraction Practice

With this worksheet, continue to use real money (or fake money) but pivot to subtraction problems. For example, this question from the worksheet asks: "If Amy buys a hot dog and a sundae, how much change will she get back from \$5.00?" Present a \$5 bill together with a few single dollars and a few quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies. Have students count out the change using the bills and coins, then double-check their answers on the board together as a class.

09
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## Choosing the Best Way to Pay

Continue to have students practice the concept of money—using real bills and coins or fake money—for this worksheet. Give each student a chance to practice the "dollar-over" method, with such questions as: "Sandra wants to buy a deluxe cheeseburger, an order of french fries, and a hamburger. How much money will she need?" The answer is \$6.65 when you add the menu items. But, ask students what is the smallest amount they could give the cashier if they only had a \$5 and several \$1 bills. Then explain why the answer would be \$7 and that they would receive 35 cents in change.

10
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## Combination Addition and Subtraction

Wrap up your lesson on menu math with this worksheet, which gives students the chance to read the cost of menu items and figure the total cost for various meals. Give students the option of figuring out the answers using real or fake money or simply by using a pencil and paper to set up and solve the addition and subtraction problems.

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Russell, Deb. "Second Grade Math: Solving Word Problems." ThoughtCo, Aug. 26, 2020, thoughtco.com/menu-problem-solving-worksheets-2312670. Russell, Deb. (2020, August 26). Second Grade Math: Solving Word Problems. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/menu-problem-solving-worksheets-2312670 Russell, Deb. "Second Grade Math: Solving Word Problems." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/menu-problem-solving-worksheets-2312670 (accessed March 22, 2023).