Problem Solving Course Outline

I. Title: Problem Solving

II. Subject Area: Mathematics

III. Topics to be covered:

A. Problem Solving Strategies
  1. Drawing a Diagram
  a) Geometric principles of perimeter and area
  1-The Pool Deck- p.16
  2- Floor Tiles- p. 21
  3- Carissa's Table- p.49 (Teacher Resource Manual)
  4- Classroom Ceiling-p.50 (Teacher Resource Manual)
  b) Arithmetic Progressions- A Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin'On- p.22
  c) Order of Operations- POW #2
  d) Exponents- POW #2
  2. Systematic Lists
  3. Eliminate Possibilities
  4. Matrix Logic
  5. Look for a Pattern
  6. Guess and Check
  7. Physical Representations
  a) Act it Out
  b) Make a Model
  c) Use Manipulatives

IV. Skills

The skills that I am focusing on in this course are:

A. The Problem Solving Strategies list above
B. Articulating mathematical ideas and processes clearly both in written and verbal forms
C. Basic mathematical computational skills
  1. Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division
  2. Order of Operations
  3. Exponents
  4. Square Roots
  5. Computations with fractions
D. Appropriate use of scientific calculator

V. Assessments
A. Students will be given a Problem of the Week (P.O.W.) every Monday that will need to be completed and turned in to be marked every Friday. Therefore, they will have completed approximately 15 P.O.W's a semester.
B. Students will have 1 quiz and 1 test for each of the Problem Solving Strategies covered. These tests will be made up of problems similar to those they completed in learning a strategy.
C. Students will have to take several quizzes/tests on skills that are reviewed within the course.
1. D. Students are required to keep a notebook, which will contain notes as well as many examples of problems they have worked on in groups or as individuals.
2. E. Students will be required to compile examples of their best work, revise that work to the best of their abilities and be able to present it in front of the class or a roundtable.

VI. Instructional Materials
A. Problem Solving Strategies, Crossing the River with Dogs, Student Text
B. Problem Solving Strategies, Crossing the River with Dogs, Teachers Resource Book
C. Interactive Mathematics Program, Year 1, Student Text

VII. Instructional Strategies
Students will be assigned to groups of four randomly that will change every 3-4 weeks. The groups will be responsible for working on solutions to problems in class, writing up the problem in the correct manner and being prepared to present their findings to the rest of the class. Students are expected to work alone on all quizzes and tests.