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Solve Addition and Subtraction Multi-step Problems

In this worksheet, students will solve addition and subtraction multi-step problems.

'Solve Addition and Subtraction Multi-step Problems' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Year:  Year 5 Maths worksheets

Curriculum topic:   Number: Addition and Subtraction

Curriculum subtopic:   Solve Multi-Step Add/Subtract Problems

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

We sometimes have problems to solve that require us to use maths in order to solve them.


This could be addition, subtraction, multiplication, division or another area of maths.

In this activity, we are going to be solving word problems using addition and subtraction.  

In most questions, we'll need to do two calculations!


Here is an example of a word problem:




Tommy had 50 sweets in a bag. 

He gives 5 to his friend and eats 10 himself. 

How many sweets does he now have?

In this question, we need to subtract 5 and 10 from 50 to find the answer.


The important information is highlighted for us - phew!


When do we add numbers?

We add when:

We increase amounts

Someone gives us something extra

We get more of something


When do we subtract numbers?

We subtract when:

We decrease amounts

We give away something

We spend money


Let's look at an example where we need to add and subtract:


children reading


A library had 250 books on Monday.

65 were borrowed on Tuesday.

90 were returned on Wednesday morning.


How many books were in the library on Wednesday afternoon?



We know the library had 250 books at the start of the week and 65 were borrowed.

So, we need to subtract 65 from 250

250 - 65 = 185

90 books were returned to the library, so we need to add this to 185

185 + 90 = 275

There were 275 books in the library on Wednesday afternoon.


Now, why don't you have a go at some questions?

Read each question carefully and think about what calculation you need to do! 

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