Sunday, January 08, 2012

Challenging Precal Problems

A while ago, I gave my precalculus class a "clock faced" problem that was not something they were used to seeing. Some of them rose to the challenge and figured it out. Most started the problem and then petered out. Too many didn't know what to do.

I struggle with how to effectively teach problem solving skills, so here is my latest attempt that will be their homework tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. I really like this worksheet. I've had a lot of trouble with "stickwithitness" maybe is the word? Many of my students are highly motivated over achievers so you'd think getting them do try complex problems wouldn't be too hard, but they're so used to being able to see right to the correct answer that they give up immediately. They won't even try. I guess this means that I need to do more work teaching them "how to try" skills, but it's the perseverance aspect I think they're lacking. How do I make them want it? Want the solution more than the grade, more than their fear of failure? I don't even grade them on right answers to their homework, just on completion but they're still too scared of putting down a wrong answer that they don't put down anything. I like you're approach though, of addressing directly a problem they had trouble solving and then building problem-solving skills through the analysis of that problem.