Problem solving refers to the process of tackling a problem to try and solve this. In mathematics problem solving utilizes mathematical processes which enable pupils to produce new observations, and sometimes new procedures. That involves query, discovery and analysis. Problem solving begins using a task that the pupils appreciate and are happy to engage in, but for which they have no immediate answer. It is linked to developing and learning strategies to tackle and solve problems. According to Broomes, Cumberbatch, James and Petty (1995) problem solving should no longer be viewed as an activity through which pupils employ after they include acquired specific mathematical principles and expertise.

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Problem solving should be viewed both as means of acquiring fresh mathematical knowledge and as a process for applying what has become previously discovered.

George Polya has also offer a four-step process intended for problem solving. These types of four methods are understand the problem, create a strategy/plan for resolving the problem, perform the strategy/ plan and check for results or look back and check.

These types of four measures are important in helping to do solving problems. The first stage of Polya’s problem solver is learning the problem. To ensure that the students to resolve a problem in a mathematics classroom they must initially understand the trouble or understand what they are asked to find or do. The situation must be browse carefully then simply analyzed. Polya taught instructors to ask students questions such as: Do you understand all the terms used in proclaiming the problem? Exactly what are you asked to do or show? Are you able to restate the condition in your own terms? Can you consider a picture or diagram which may help you understand the problem? Perhaps there is enough information to help you nd a remedy?

Polya’s Second Principle: Develop a plan

Polya mentions there are many sensible ways to fix problems. The skill in choosing an appropriate strategy is the most suitable learned by simply solving a large number of problems. You can expect to nd choosing a strategy progressively easy.

An incomplete list of strategies is included: Suppose and examine Look for a style

Make an organized list Pull a picture

Eliminate choices Solve a simpler problem

Use proportion Use a version

Consider special instances Work back

Use direct thinking Use a formulation

Fix an formula Be innovative

1Polya’s Third Principle: Perform the plan

This step is usually simpler than devising the plan. In general, all you need is definitely care and patience, given that you have the mandatory skills. Persist with the program that you have chosen. If it continues not to work discard that and choose another. Do not misled, this is how mathematics is done, even by simply professionals.

Polya’s Fourth Rule: Look back

Polya describes that much could be gained by using the time to reveal and look again at everything you have done, what worked, and what failed to. Doing this is going to enable you to predict what strategy to use to solve upcoming problems. And so starting within the next page, here is a synopsis, in the masters own words, on strategies for attacking challenges in math class.

This is taken from the book, Tips on how to Solve This, by George Polya, 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1957


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