I P.A.W.S. for Word Problems - ProTeacher Community

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I P.A.W.S. for Word Problems

Posted 07-20-2010 at 01:05 PM by Mariely
Updated 08-02-2010 at 07:22 AM by Mariely

A few months ago I attended a workshop where a math teacher shared a strategy that she uses with her students to help them solve word problems.

The strategy involves a paw outline using the title "I P.A.W.S. for Word Problems." This is what the acronym P.A.W.S. stands for:

Problem Key Words
Analyze the Steps
Work it Out
Solve! Does it make sense?

Then on the actual paw part of the outline, the students would work out their problems. This area is called the "Work Pad."

This was such a creative idea that I decided to create a document for it. Attached you will find the PDF I created for "I P.A.W.S. for Word Problems." Let me know what you think.

Update: I realize that some of you were not able to access the attachment due to restrictions on your member level. I uploaded the document to my website and if you are interested, you may find it by following this link:


Attached Images
File Type: pdf PAWS-4wordproblems-compatible.pdf (180.1 KB, 2729 views)
Posted in Teaching Related , Math
Comments 14

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Total Comments 14


  1. Old Comment
    Thanks for sharing! I really like the work pad space.
    Posted 07-20-2010 at 01:28 PM by KC2 KC2 is offline
  2. Old Comment
    TEACH1's Avatar
    Such a neat acronym! Your documents seems creative, but for some reason I couldn't view what was on the circles of the paw print
    Posted 07-20-2010 at 03:51 PM by TEACH1 TEACH1 is offline
  3. Old Comment
    Mariely's Avatar

    Error in Viewing

    Were you able to read the title? How about the "Work Pad" title in the center? Let me know. If you weren't able to view those as well, it's probably due to the font I used. If that's the case, I'll change the font and repost it. Thanks for the heads up.
    Posted 07-20-2010 at 04:33 PM by Mariely Mariely is offline
  4. Old Comment
    I LIKE THIS!!! Catchy and cute -- it'll appeal to my second graders. Would you mind posting this in black and white? I'd like to print it, enlarge it, color it (with markers/crayons,etc.) to go with my theme colors, laminate it, then put it on my math wall.
    Thank you!
    Posted 07-21-2010 at 07:12 AM by luvbees luvbees is offline
  5. Old Comment
    SisterAnne's Avatar
    Mariely, you are generous with your sharing...thank you! Your instructions for putting together materials are always sequential and easy to understand. You are not only a creative teacher but also organized.
    Posted 07-21-2010 at 09:25 AM by SisterAnne SisterAnne is offline
  6. Old Comment
    Mariely's Avatar

    Black and White Version

    Per your request, you will find the black and white version of this file by following this link:


    Posted 07-21-2010 at 09:37 AM by Mariely Mariely is offline
  7. Old Comment
    Mariely's Avatar


    Thank you so much for your comment! Your words are always uplifiting and inspiring to me. Take care! Hugs.
    Posted 07-21-2010 at 09:37 AM by Mariely Mariely is offline
  8. Old Comment
    alligooner's Avatar
    This is great. Thanks so much for sharing!
    Posted 07-21-2010 at 10:01 PM by alligooner alligooner is offline
  9. Old Comment
    Mariely's Avatar


    You are most welcome!
    Posted 07-22-2010 at 03:58 AM by Mariely Mariely is offline
  10. Old Comment
    dizzydolphin's Avatar

    Love it!

    I am running it off in color, laminating it or putting it in sheet protectors and putting it in their binders. We are going to use and reuse it every time we solve problems so that it becomes automatic. Thanks so much for the visual.
    Posted 07-23-2010 at 05:19 AM by dizzydolphin dizzydolphin is offline
  11. Old Comment
    J.Elaine's Avatar
    First of all, I want to say how happy I am to find your blog. I am a looping (4th/5th) teacher, and I am 4th this fall. I can tell you, I'll be checking in here on a regular basis!

    I love the PAWS strategy! In our district, we are the TIGERS, so the PAWS will fit right in!

    The form you created is perfect. I can project that on my SmartBoard to introduce the strategy and to continue to reinforce it as we solve problems. Having the work pad will help kids remember that they are supposed to show their work.

    Thank you very much for sharing.
    Posted 07-24-2010 at 09:15 AM by J.Elaine J.Elaine is offline
  12. Old Comment
    Mariely's Avatar


    I am so happy you all have found this to be a great resource for your classroom and I'm happy to help and share in every way I can.

    Laminating them and putting them in sheet protectors is a great idea. So is the idea of projecting it on the Smart Board. Awesome!

    Thank you for your comments!
    Posted 07-30-2010 at 04:38 PM by Mariely Mariely is offline
  13. Old Comment
    CageyBee's Avatar
    Once again...a fabulous teaching aid! Thanks...I printed it out for a colleague who is still teaching.
    Posted 08-01-2010 at 03:16 AM by CageyBee CageyBee is offline
  14. Old Comment
    Mariely's Avatar

    That's Great!

    I'm glad you are able to share it with your colleague. It's always great to help each other out. I'm happy that it will be useful to her. Take care!
    Posted 08-01-2010 at 11:10 AM by Mariely Mariely is offline

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