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Winter Problem Solving

# Winter Problem Solving

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11/15/2012

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Read it. Draw it. Solve it.Winter Problem Solving
Brooke PerryPrimary perspectivewww.eduperry.com

Here are 12 math problems which can be used to review problemsolving strategies. They include addition, subtraction, fact families,one to one correspondence, skip counting, fractions andcomparing/ordering numbers. I will glue them at the top of a pieceof chart paper then have the students help me solve them as theycomplete their own work on individual dry erase boards. I will callon students to help me solve the problems on the large paper andexplain how they solved the problem.
My school uses a problem solving format called “cubes.” It’s very simple
and effective for young learners. My kiddos have been using it sinceSeptember, and by this point in the school year they know what eachletter of the acronym stands for and the order for solving and checking
problems. “Cubes” was adapted/created by the math vertical family at my
school, and it is used by all students K-4. This is really helpful as students transition from one grade level to the next. They are familiar with the terminology and sequence of problem solving steps. We also use aproblem solving mat to help us solve. K-1 uses the same mat, 2
nd
has amat unique to their grade level, and 3-4 use a very similar mat.

First we read the problem aloud 2 times. Once while the students listen to me and follow alongsilently and once where we read chorally (another great way to build fluency during math).
C-Circle the question.U-underline important information.B-box the key words (in all, how many more
)E-evaluate (do we add/subtract/compare..?)S-Solve and check (does the answer make sense,how can we double check, explain your thinking)

We also use 4 basic problem solving strategies called the “fantastic 4.”
1.

Draw a picture.2.

Act it out.3.

Look for a pattern.4.

Estimate then check.We focus on the process and on reflective thinking when we complete problemsolving activities. Even if a student has the correct answer, they know that theyare expected to discuss how they got their answer and what they were thinkingabout as they were working.