Thursday, July 16, 2020

5 tips to teach how to answer MATHEMATICS PROBLEM SOLVING QUESTIONS for weaker students

Students are often scared by Mathhematics Problem Solving Questions when asked either during the examination or in the classroom. For weaker students, the problem-solving questions become more complicated if they cannot understand the questions properly. So here are 5 Tips to teach the students on how to answer mathematics problem solving questions:

1. Reset student mindset: YOU CAN DO IT!

The most important thing is to make sure that the students are not afraid when confronted with problem-solving questions. So our job is to try to reset their minds to see that this type of question can be resolved. There is an answer. Although the question may be confusing and not straight forward, there is a way to solve it. We don't just have to direct, tell or speak to them, but we need to make them feel that the question can be solved. For example, frequently introduce problem-solving questions at the beginning of the lesson and do not wait to introduce them only after the end of the lesson.

2. Read quickly the first time and underline any value or numbers you see

Once the mind is set correctly, now we can focus on the question. Teach students to read the questions quickly from start to finish. When students see numbers or mathematical operations involved in a question sentence, they need to mark or underline them in order to prepare themselves to understand the question. It looks simple, but very helpful!

3. Read and understand the questions

After reading fast, you can read again to understand the question. This time read to find clues one by one. Take your time. If necessary, while reading, sketch, write a short note to understand what steps to take to get answers.

4. DO IT!

This is most important. DO! TRY! This is usually what the weaker students do not do. They decided to leave the question and do nothing. Force yourself to try to DO it and put aside whether what you did was right or wrong. The most important thing to DO and TRY. DO IT!


Even if it is wrong and students do not understand, do not give up on them. Encourage students by providing positive feedback even when the answer is wrong. Do not just cross "X" the wrong answer. See and value their efforts!

PS: do you still remember the time you first encounter problem solving question during primary school?

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Superb! ;)