# What Is Problem Solving In Mathematical Learning

Virtual manipulatives can be used in addition to (or as an alternative to) the physical manipulatives that are already found in most mathematics classrooms.The following short video, Virtual Manipulatives, below provides an overview of how to make use of virtual manipulatives.This article draws from the Power Up WHAT WORKS website, particularly the Understanding Problems Instructional Strategy Guide.

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One strategy is to use a process chart, which can guide students as they tackle a new problem.

It helps to focus on how each step of the process supports students as they work to access the problem.

Garcia decides to begin the class by reviewing the problem-solving process.

He works with the entire class to solve a multiplication problem from Thinking Blocks: Students then work in pairs to create their own problems.

They monitor and evaluate their progress, and they change course if necessary.

In contrast, students who struggle with mathematics may find it difficult to successfully carry out parts (or, indeed, all) of this complex process.Look for links to other suggested materials on Power Up's Pinterest page.As the end of the school year approaches, almost all of Mr.Ask them to explain why they chose it and why they think it is a good mathematical expression to use for the problem they are tackling.There are many technology tools and resources that can support students as they work to understand problems and expand their repertoire of appropriate models.There are also many websites that offer lesson plans for teachers.Read Write Think, for example, provides a number of high-quality materials, including several that focus specifically on developing reading comprehension through mathematical problem solving.They make conjectures about the form and the meaning of the solution, and they plan a solution pathway rather than simply jumping into a solution attempt.They consider analogous problems, and they try special cases and simpler forms of the original problem in order to gain insight into its solution.To solve a word problem, students need to understand its context and develop a strategy to solve it.There are many ways to help your students build these skills and understand how to use them in specific situations (see UDL Checkpoint 6.2: Support planning and strategy development).

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