4th Grade - Math

LESSON PROBLEM: Computation: How can we use rice to solve problem questions?


Rice is the edible seed of a cereal grass that is cooked and used for food. Using information about rice, you can learn how to problem solve in math.

Let's examine the nutrient value of rice to learn about the importance of rice as a food. Yes, rice is a healthy food. The USDA Food Guide Pyramid Program recommends rice and other grains in our diet. Here are the values of rice:

1. Rice is low in calories, just 103 calories in a 1/2 cup serving.

2. There is no fat in rice.

3. Rice is a great source of complex carbohydrates.

4. Rice is naturally cholesterol free.
* cholesterol is an odorless, soft waxy substance that can build up in the bloodstream. Too much cholesterol can cause health problems like heart disease.

5. Rice is naturally sodium free. Sodium is the chemical name for salt.

Rice is an important part of the human diet. It is used to fuel our bodies. Complex carbohydrates are digested and stored in the muscles of our bodies in the form of glycogen and then released as energy when needed. Rice contains vitamins such as niacin, thiamin and iron.

In order to problem solve you must follow these four steps:

1. Understand: "Understand" means to follow the meaning of the question being asked.

What do you already know?

What do you need to know?

2. Plan: Planning is a method of achieving an end.
What do you need to do to get your answer? You may need to add, subtract, multiply or divide.

3. Solve: Solving is finding the solution, explanation or answer.

What is the answer to the question?

4. Look Back: Now you recheck your steps to see if you have answered the question correctly.

Let's use these problem solving steps to answer some questions about rice nutrition.

Step 1: Understand: What do we know about rice?

Rice is low in fat, calories and cholesterol.

Step 2: Plan: What do you need to do to get information on rice nutrition.

Rice nutrition is on every box of rice and is listed in this lesson. Rice is nutritious and very healthy. Rice is so low in cholesterol that eating rice will help you, not hurt you.

Step 3: Solve: Learn the nutrient value of rice by eating a bowl of rice and finding that it can give you energy by refueling your body and that it can make you healthy.

Step 4: Look Back: Does rice help you if you eat it? Does rice have cholesterol? Does rice have sodium? Is rice a great source of complex carbohydrates? The answer to all of these questions is yes. Then, congratulations! You have successfully used rice in problem solving.

Rice is a great source of nutrition to any meal. Eating rice helps refuel the body and guards against high levels of cholesterol.


Let's Graph:

Use the figures below of metric tons produced to "add data" to a graph you create.

US: 125.3
Asia: 635.2
Africa: 420.5
Europe: 335.6
South America: 385.6

Have fun and print your results. These numbers are fictitious but show everyone you can solve problems by graphing.


Make some rice:

Find a favorite rice recipe and follow the steps in making a rice dish. Ask an adult to help you and use your problem solving skills by going through each step.


  • understand
  • solve
  • cholesterol
  • calories
  • carbohydrates
  • nutritious

Click here to play Rice Rampage!
Baldo is actually a type of specialty rice grown right here in the U.S. Other types include basmati, jasmine and arborio.
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