Problem Solving

  • Problem Solving

    Problem solving plays an important role in mathematics and should have a prominent role in the mathematics education of K-12 students. However, knowing how to incorporate problem solving meaningfully into the mathematics curriculum is not necessarily obvious to mathematics teachers. (The term "problem solving" refers to mathematical tasks that have the potential to provide intellectual challenges for enhancing students' mathematical understanding and development.) Fortunately, a considerable amount of research on teaching and learning mathematical problem solving has been conducted during the past 40 years or so and, taken collectively; this body of work provides useful suggestions for both teachers and curriculum writers. The following brief provides some directions on teaching with problem solving based on research.