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Problem Solving Series Book 3

Strategies and techniques covering all strands of the curriculum, with activities to reinforce each problem solving method.

Problem Solving Series Book 3 by Val Morey
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This blackline masters book contains a learning outcomes approach to mathematics education meaning students and teachers need many and varied opportunities for students to demonstrate their learning and their understanding.  In order to make more accurate assessments of students’ understanding, and therefore place them carefully within the levels described in the curriculum document, activities are needed which address two important aspects: The activities provided in this book are based on realistic situations which school students of age 9 - 10 could expect to be familiar with or to face. The strategies in this book include: Guess and Check;  Create a Diagram;  Use a Table;  Logical Reasoning;  Make a Table;  Find a Pattern;  Work Backwards;  Solve an Easier Version. Each strategy is applied to problems across the math curriculum incorporating the strands of: Number Space Measurement Chance & Data

To be as accurate as possible in determining students’ current level of numeracy, those students must be given opportunities to demonstrate their understanding through activities which really show what they are able to do, as well as what they are not. Scoring 100% in a page of exercises tells teachers that a student has learnt what was taught, and can be useful information for checking that criteria have been met, but may not be a demonstration of their true or full mathematical understanding.

Ready-Ed Publications; June 2002
52 pages; ISBN 9781863974646
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Title: Problem Solving Series Book 3
Author: Val Morey; Terry Allen

Strategy: Make a List

This strategy is easy to use and helps you to "think straight". Sometimes a problem does not involve any real calculating, but there is just too much information for you to handle in your head – so, you write it down.

By making a list, you can think about each part in turn without worrying that you will forget parts that came before.

If you were asked how many different lunch combinations of one savoury item and a piece of fruit you could make from your school cafeteria menu of meat and salad rolls, salad only rolls, hotdogs, hamburgers, pizza, apples, oranges, bananas and grapes, no doubt your head would spin if you tried to work it out mentally. However, you would have to agree that there are no difficult calculations involved – the difficulty lies only in making sure you "get them all".

Problem: Blow It Up

Your class has been asked to decorate the assembly area for a school dance and balloons are to be put up around the walls. To make it interesting, your teacher has asked each class member to put up 4 different colored balloons, in a different order to everyone else in the class.
You have plenty of packets of balloons, but they only come in red, green, blue and yellow.

"That won’t be enough colors!" someone says.
"We have 26 people in this class!"

"Oh yes," replies your teacher. "But we need a couple of people to supervise and make sure no two orders are the same. So if two people could volunteer to do that rather than put up balloons, then we’ll have plenty."

You are not so sure and neither are a few other people.
Is your teacher right? Use the space below to work out your solution.