6th and 7th grade students do not like to write equations for word problems. They just want to scratch out some calculations and give me their answer. Often, their answer is correct, but I would love for them to develop how to write an equation from a word problem at this level.
I made this four step foldable to visually slow them down, and illustrate the steps they need to take when writing an equation from a word problem. The students caught on very easily when I did this in class with them. For the first time, they seemed to realize that they needed to complete several steps in order to solve a word problem (by writing an equation). I emphasized the importance of the equation.
This is the example that I wrote on the board to illustrate how to write an equation and solve it.
Sorry for the upside down picture! I was trying to post using my iPad. That app needs work!