Home / Newsletters / February 18, 2018 GMLS Division Newsletter / Problem Solving by Shelly Moses

Problem Solving by Shelly Moses

An old saying is “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.” What is meant by this is that for any problem, there’s a host of solutions. Some may be more efficient, some ridiculously time consuming, but they are still solutions. This is true when it comes to skinning cats, saving astronauts in peril, writing a story about your weekend, or solving a math problem.

Math is often viewed as only adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing, but it’s so much more. Skill is not about how fast you can compute. It’s about thinking deeply about patterns; making connections to the beauty and magnificence of the real world; solving something in more than one way in order to prove your results, and comparing those results with others; as well as persevering through challenges and difficulties.

Positive conversations about math can go a long way towards helping your child to see themselves as “a math person.” We are ALL “math people,” just as we are all “readers.” Want to know about what your child is doing in math class but don’t get much from them? Try some of these conversation starters to shift the focus to viewing your child as a mathematician whose mind is challenged daily:

  • How did you help someone in math today?

  • What challenge did you persevere and work through today?

  • What mistake did you make today and what did you learn from it?

  • What can you teach me that I might not know or might have forgotten?

Want to experience math together with your child in a fun and exciting environment? Well, you are in luck! On Monday, Feb. 26th from 6:30-7:30 in the Ulam we will be holding our 2nd Math Festival. The students will visit the festival during the day for an hour to participate in math games and activities focusing on algebraic thinking and patterns. In the evening, they return to school with you in tow to show you what they learned during the day, and to try what they didn’t have time to try earlier. Here’s the bonus… after the festival, all of the games and activities will be available for download so you can continue the fun at home.

We are looking for volunteers to help out during the school time section of the festival. If you can volunteer, please fill out this form.

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