Understand the problem carefully. The key to understanding is ready very carefully. Make sure that you understand the problem being presented, and you understand it correctly. You should point out the information that you are given, and what is being asked. If a picture can be drawn, make one. Illustrations are usually very helpful!
Write out the equations. Now you have to express your plan mathematically. This will involve:
Assigning some variable name to the unknowns. You can always use x, or d for distance, t for time, and so on. If two quantities are given to be related, relate them so that both are expressed in just one variable. So, if Johnny is twice as old as Orlando, let x stand for Orlando’s age, and 2x for Johnny’s 🙂
Translating the English into the Math. Remember that in math, English phrases have corresponding mathematical meanings.
Now that you have the equations, carry out your plan and solve for what is asked. Remember that your solution must be what the problem is asking for! Be careful!
Check your answer. Is it reasonable enough? Does your answer even make sense? If you feel there is something off, trace back and see whether you have made a mistake in your calculation. Beginners ( & experts!) often make mistakes.