Problem Solving Skills In Math Writing Business Plan Template
For these reasons problem solving can be developed as a valuable skill in itself, a way of thinking (NCTM, 1989), rather than just as the means to an end of finding the correct answer.
Many writers have emphasised the importance of problem solving as a means of developing the logical thinking aspect of mathematics.
Mathematicians who successfully solve problems say that the experience of having done so contributes to an appreciation for the 'power and beauty of mathematics' (NCTM, 1989, p.77), the "joy of banging your head against a mathematical wall, and then discovering that there might be ways of either going around or over that wall" (Olkin and Schoenfeld, 1994, p.43). 'Constructing meaningful understanding of mathematics content', in Aichele, D. (Eds.) Professional Development for Teachers of Mathematics , pp.
They also speak of the willingness or even desire to engage with a task for a length of time which causes the task to cease being a 'puzzle' and allows it to become a problem.
Individuals can no longer function optimally in society by just knowing the rules to follow to obtain a correct answer.
They also need to be able to decide through a process of logical deduction what algorithm, if any, a situation requires, and sometimes need to be able to develop their own rules in a situation where an algorithm cannot be directly applied.
Furthermore it can help people to adapt to changes and unexpected problems in their careers and other aspects of their lives. However, although it is this engagement which initially motivates the solver to pursue a problem, it is still necessary for certain techniques to be available for the involvement to continue successfully. Report of the Committee of Inquiry into the Teaching of Mathematics in Schools, London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office. Hence more needs to be understood about what these techniques are and how they can best be made available. Resnick expressed the belief that 'school should focus its efforts on preparing people to be good adaptive learners, so that they can perform effectively when situations are unpredictable and task demands change' (p.18). Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics, Reston, Virginia: NCTM. Cockcroft (1982) also advocated problem solving as a means of developing mathematical thinking as a tool for daily living, saying that problem-solving ability lies 'at the heart of mathematics' (p.73) because it is the means by which mathematics can be applied to a variety of unfamiliar situations. Through a problem-solving approach, this aspect of mathematics can be developed. Presenting a problem and developing the skills needed to solve that problem is more motivational than teaching the skills without a context. Let us consider how problem solving is a useful medium for each of these. It has already been pointed out that mathematics is an essential discipline because of its practical role to the individual and society. Schoenfeld also suggested that a good problem should be one which can be extended to lead to mathematical explorations and generalisations. He described three characteristics of mathematical thinking: Problem solving is an important component of mathematics education because it is the single vehicle which seems to be able to achieve at school level all three of the values of mathematics listed at the outset of this article: functional, logical and aesthetic.