## Problem of the Week (POW)

On an ordinary week, each student will be given a purple half-sheet with a “story problem” to solve. Each problem will be solved with 5 important steps which will help them to identify what the problem is asking them to do, work through the process, and explain their thinking. The five steps are as follows:

Students are to read the problem carefully, decide what the problem is asking them to solve, and write a single sentence. For example: “I need to find out how many people can sit around 8 square tables if each table can fit 4 people.”

This is the section where the students will show their work. I want to see ALL attempts at solving the problem, and even recommend that the students do their POWs in pen! PLEASE DO NOT ERASE. Even if the student does not solve the problem accurately, he/she can still receive some credit for multiple attempts.

Once the students have come to an answer, they are to write a single sentence that expresses the answer in words. For example: “32 people can sit around the tables.” Their answers should “match up” with the Problem Statement in Step I.

This is a step provided for students to extend their thinking. They may choose to solve the problem in a different way or change the problem somehow

Finally, students are to explain what they learned about problem solving or math in general.

Each section is worth 2 points. How a student scores on each section will be shown on their paper. Scores will be out of ten for the game’s purposes, and will be converted to a percent for grading purposes. For example, an 8/10 will be an 80% for a “4”. Students are also able to complete an “extra credit” POW each week. Their extra credit score will help their grades as well as help their teams.

POWs will always be due on Tuesdays, unless there is a holiday or other day off. In those cases, students

Although students will receive instruction on strategies and should not

**I. Problem Statement**Students are to read the problem carefully, decide what the problem is asking them to solve, and write a single sentence. For example: “I need to find out how many people can sit around 8 square tables if each table can fit 4 people.”

**II. Process**This is the section where the students will show their work. I want to see ALL attempts at solving the problem, and even recommend that the students do their POWs in pen! PLEASE DO NOT ERASE. Even if the student does not solve the problem accurately, he/she can still receive some credit for multiple attempts.

**III. Solution**Once the students have come to an answer, they are to write a single sentence that expresses the answer in words. For example: “32 people can sit around the tables.” Their answers should “match up” with the Problem Statement in Step I.

**IV. Extensions**This is a step provided for students to extend their thinking. They may choose to solve the problem in a different way or change the problem somehow

*and show how the new problem would be solved*.**V. Learning**Finally, students are to explain what they learned about problem solving or math in general.

Each section is worth 2 points. How a student scores on each section will be shown on their paper. Scores will be out of ten for the game’s purposes, and will be converted to a percent for grading purposes. For example, an 8/10 will be an 80% for a “4”. Students are also able to complete an “extra credit” POW each week. Their extra credit score will help their grades as well as help their teams.

POWs will always be due on Tuesdays, unless there is a holiday or other day off. In those cases, students

*may**not*have a POW or they may be due on another day, depending on other scheduling issues.Although students will receive instruction on strategies and should not

*need*too much help to solve the problems, families are encouraged to work through the problems together. Students are also encouraged to seek and give help from/to their classmates, particularly those on their MathQuest “team”. As long as the students are working through the steps, they will do well and you will definitely see an improvement as they become more confident problem solvers. If s/he is still “stumped” on Monday (I *do* want them to attempt the problem for a few days before seeking help), be sure to have your child ask for help. I am happy to give it … before Tuesday morning.