Subject: ESL/ELL (English Language Learning), Math
Lesson Length: 30  45 mins
Topic: Phrases for Algebraic Operations
Grade Level: 4, 5, 6
Objective: Critical thinking
Standards: CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.4.OA.A.3
Standards:
Match phrases to algebraic symbols from visually supported oral statements. Solve multistep word problems posed with whole numbers and having wholenumber answers using the four operations.
Brief Description: Students will identify key phrases in word problems to determine which operation should be used.
Know Before You Start: This lesson teaches the signal words for addition and subtraction. You can adapt this lesson to address other algebraic operations as needed.
Hook: Read and discuss the first panel of the sample comic.
Activity:

Continue reading panels 2 and 3. As each panel is displayed, have students search for signal words that help them decide whether to add or subtract.

As students answer, add these words to a signal word tchart

Complete the same exercise for panel 4, 5, and 6.

Hang the chart in the room as a reference.

Extension: have students use Pixton to create their own word problem using a signal word. Have partners attempt to find the signal word and solve the problem.
Closure: Remind students that it is important to look for signal words or phrases in word problems to figure out whether we need to add or subtract.
Differentiation: Enrichment Adapt this lesson to the operation you want to target (ex: multiplication/division).
Resources: Comic to print or display: Comic 1.