Problem Solving

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Problem Solving

This feature explains how NRICH can help you develop a problem-solving approach to the teaching and learning of mathematics. Read Lynne's article which discusses the place of problem solving in the new curriculum and sets the scene. In the second article, Lynne explains the difference between 'rich' tasks and 'low threshold high ceiling' tasks, drawing on examples from the site. In the third article, Jennie offers you practical ways to investigate aspects of your classroom culture and in the fourth article, she suggests three ways in which we can support children in becoming competent problem solvers. Scroll down to see tasks from the site which exemplify the ideas contained within the articles.

Problem Solving and the New Curriculum link

Problem Solving and the New Curriculum 

Stage: 1 and 2

Is problem solving at the heart of your curriculum? In this article for teachers, Lynne explains why it should be.

What's the Difference Between Rich Tasks and Low Threshold High Ceiling Ones? link

What's the Difference Between Rich Tasks and Low Threshold High Ceiling Ones? 

Stage: Early years, 1 and 2

In this article for teachers, Lynne explains the difference between 'rich tasks' and 'low threshold high ceiling' tasks, using examples from the website.

Developing a Classroom Culture That Supports a Problem-solving Approach to Mathematics link

Developing a Classroom Culture That Supports a Problem-solving Approach to Mathematics 

Stage: 1 and 2

This article offers you practical ways to investigate aspects of your classroom culture.

Developing Excellence in Problem Solving with Young Learners link

Developing Excellence in Problem Solving with Young Learners 

Stage: 1 and 2

Becoming confident and competent as a problem solver is a complex process that requires a range of skills and experience. In this article, Jennie suggests that we can support this process in three principal ways.

Noah link

Noah 

Stage: 1 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

Noah saw 12 legs walk by into the Ark. How many creatures did he see?

How Would We Count? link

How Would We Count? 

Stage: 1 and 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

An activity centred around observations of dots and how we visualise number arrangement patterns.

Bracelets link

Bracelets 

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

Investigate the different shaped bracelets you could make from 18 different spherical beads. How do they compare if you use 24 beads?

Planning a School Trip link

Planning a School Trip 

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:1

You are organising a school trip and you need to write a letter to parents to let them know about the day. Use the cards to gather all the information you need.

Stringy Quads link

Stringy Quads 

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

This practical problem challenges you to make quadrilaterals with a loop of string. You'll need some friends to help!

Dice in a Corner link

Dice in a Corner 

Stage: 2 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3 Challenge Level:3

How could you arrange at least two dice in a stack so that the total of the visible spots is 18?

Got It link

Got It 

Stage: 2 and 3 Challenge Level: Challenge Level:2 Challenge Level:2

A game for two people, or play online. Given a target number, say 23, and a range of numbers to choose from, say 1-4, players take it in turns to add to the running total to hit their target.