Multiple Problem-Solving Strategies in Instruction
Mark Driscoll explains how use of multiple strategies contributes to student learning by letting students see problems in new ways. He stresses the importance of worked examples and comparing and contrasting strategies.
FEATURING: Mark J. Driscoll, Education Development Center
This summary describes a wide range of research-based recommendations for guiding instruction in problem solving. Three important strategies that apply at all grade levels and in all areas of math are: use of visual representations, encouragement of multiple approaches to solving problems, and linking mathematical and algebraic notation to intuitive approaches.
In the media piece, Connecting Mathematical Ideas to Notation, Sybilla Beckmann presents two examples of problems showing how students can connect mathematical concepts and notation. This sample material has the problem statements along with the solution ideas given by Beckmann.
Elementary math coaches in the Papillion-La Vista School District use a lesson pre-conference planning form with teachers. Coaches work with teachers to consider goals and students’ experience and interests as they prepare problems and incorporate problem-solving activities into lessons.
This sample question list is organized to go along with tasks in problem solving. Teachers can use this list to prepare prompts and to help students monitor and reflect during the problem-solving process.
Listen to two mathematics coaches from the Papillion-La Vista School District share the concepts they emphasize when working with teachers, including the importance of comparing multiple approaches to solving a problem and debriefing the strategies students have used.
FEATURING: Jane McGill & Danielle Inserra, Papillion Junior High School (NE)