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Problem Solving Top Ten List #1

The study of mathematics should emphasize problem solving so that students can use and apply a wide variety of strategies to investigate and understand mathematical content. In this way, they will acquire confidence in using mathematics meaningfully. 

What is a real problem that requires problem solving?  It presents a challenge which cannot be resolved by some routine procedure known to the student and where the student accepts the challenge!  But what happens when students become frustrated and say they are stuck? Let's look at ten ways to get them unstuck.

The Top Ten Ways to Get Unstuck:
    1. Re-read the problem.
    2. Modify your strategy.
    3. Change your strategy.
    4. Combine your strategy with another strategy.
    5. Look at the problem from a new perspective.
    6. Look at the answer.
    7. Look at other similar problems.
    8. Ask for help.
    9. Wait awhile and then try again.
    10. All of the above.
Next week we will review the Top Ten Reasons for Getting Stuck in the First Place!


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