*Although the teacher needs to be very much present, the primary focus in the class needs to be on the students’ thinking processes.”Students need to have opportunities to work on complex tasks rather than a series of simple tasks devolved from a complex task.*

*Although the teacher needs to be very much present, the primary focus in the class needs to be on the students’ thinking processes.”Students need to have opportunities to work on complex tasks rather than a series of simple tasks devolved from a complex task.*

The teacher’s role is to construct problems and present situations that provide a forum in which problem-solving can occur.

Our students live in an information and technology-based society where they need to be able to think critically about complex issues, and “analyze and think logically about new situations, devise unspecified solution procedures, and communicate their solution clearly and convincingly to others” (Baroody, 1998).

Through these social interactions, students feel that they can take risks, try new strategies, and give and receive feedback.

They learn cooperatively as they share a range of points of view or discuss ways of solving a problem.

These types of complex problems will provide opportunities for discussion and learning.

Students will have opportunities to explain their ideas, respond to the ideas of others, and challenge their thinking.“A problem-solving curriculum, however, requires a different role from the teacher.Rather than directing a lesson, the teacher needs to provide time for students to grapple with problems, search for strategies and solutions on their own, and learn to evaluate their own results.Getting unstuck typically takes time and involves trying a variety of approaches. Effective problems: ‘classrooms where the orientation consistently defines task outcomes in terms of the answers rather than the thinking processes entailed in reaching the answers negatively affects the thinking processes and mathematical identities of learners’ (Anthony and Walshaw, 2007, page 122).Effective teachers model good problem-solving habits for their students.These include recognition of the developmental aspects of learning and the essential fact that students actively engage in learning mathematics through Children arrive at school with intuitive mathematical understandings.A teacher needs to connect with and build on those understandings through experiences that allow students to explore mathematics and to communicate their ideas in a meaningful dialogue with the teacher and their peers.Learning takes place within social settings (Vygotsky, 1978).Students construct understandings through engagement with problems and interaction with others in these activities.Mathematics education is important not only because of the “gatekeeping role that mathematics plays in students’ access to educational and economic opportunities,” but also because the problem-solving processes and the acquisition of problem-solving strategies equips students for life beyond school (Cobb, & Hodge, 2002).The importance of problem-solving in learning mathematics comes from the belief that mathematics is primarily about reasoning, not memorization.

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