Sunday, 23 October 2016

Producing Problem Solvers

I recently attended a workshop and we discussed how to use different lesson strategies for problem solving.

I had previously looked at Peter Sullivan's launch approaches and the before, during and after from the brilliant resource Teaching Student Centered Mathematics by John A. Van De Walle.

This time I was introduced to Poyla's 4 Step Plan. 

1. Understanding the problem - asking questions, checking for meaning 
2. Thinking -  how you will solve it or what strategies you will use.
3. Doing - solving the problem 
4. Reflecting - Is my answer correct?, could I have used another strategy?

Using these steps I created a template that allows my students to follow this process independently.

We spent a good period of time going over the steps and modeling using open ended questions as examples.

I was amazed when one of my ESL students said, "What do we know and what don't we know" in relation to understanding the word problem.

Another student said, "What does that word mean?

Then another "What numbers do we know?"

My students love using it and adding to their 'tool box' of strategies. I like it because it is a simple process and give students a great visual cue to work from. 

We will keep using this as we go through our problem solving units.

If you would life a copy send me a message! 

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