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If you are not careful, they may try to use it all the time.As problems get more difficult, other strategies become more important and more effective.Guess and improve is slightly more sophisticated than guess and check.
In this site we have linked the problem solving lessons to the following groupings of problem solving strategies.
As the site develops we may add some more but we have tried to keep things simple for now.
Since there are problems where using equipment is a better strategy than drawing, you should encourage children’s use of equipment by modelling its use yourself from time to time.3 Draw It is fairly clear that a picture has to be used in the strategy Draw a Picture. It should only contain enough detail to solve the problem.
Hence a rough circle with two marks is quite sufficient for chickens and a blob plus four marks will do for pigs.
In word problems, there are so many words that need decoding, extra information, and opportunities for students to solve for something that the question is not asking for. Why I don’t like it: Though I love the opportunity for students to write in math, writing a strategy statement for every problem can eat up a lot of time. Students having to defend the reasonableness of their answer is essential for students’ number sense.
S stands for circle the important numbers, underline the question, box the words that are keywords, eliminate extra information, and solve by showing work. S stands for read the problem, underline the question, name the problem type, and write a strategy sentence.
The on-looking children may be more interested in acting it out because other children are involved.
Sometimes, though, the children acting out the problem may get less out of the exercise than the children watching.
There are a number of common strategies that children of primary age can use to help them solve problems.
We discuss below several that will be of value for problems on this web-site and in books on problem solving.