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Teaching with PoWs

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Problems of the Week Membership -- Getting Started

What Are the Current Problems?

The Current Problems include: Primary (PrimaryPoW) Math Fundamentals (FunPoW), Pre-Algebra (PreAlgPoW), Algebra (AlgPoW), Geometry (GeoPoW), and Trig & Calculus (TrigCalcPoW).

View a 3-minute video: Current PoW Page and the Teacher Resources in the "blue box"

We think of these grade bands as the appropriate level of mathematics for each of the problems but sometimes PrimaryPoWs may work well with high school students and/or GeoPoWs may work well with middle school students:
    K-2: Primary
    3-5: Math Fundamentals
    6-8: Pre-Algebra
    formal Algebra 1: Algebra
    high school geometry: Geometry
    high school: Trig & Calculus

FunPoW, AlgPoW and TrigCalcPoW are on the same two week schedule. PrimaryPoW, PreAlgPoW and GeoPoW are on another two week schedule. If teachers want a new problem each week they can offer students a FunPoW one week and a PreAlgPoW another week (or other combinations).

The Current Problems run on a schedule described like this:

click to view The Life Cycle of a Problem of the Week graphic

  • a problem previews on a Thursday
  • a problem is open for submissions on a Monday
  • the submissions stay open for two weeks
  • if a student has submitted during that two week time span, they can revise to be considered for "highlighting" until midnight Thursday
  • Friday morning the Latest Solution link will display both our commentary and a selection of highlighted student solutions
  • NOTE: the idea that the problem closes now only refers to the activity with our volunteer mentors and/or having a student's solution considered for publishing on our website. Students may submit to the Current Problems listed on the Calendar page at any time and they can revise their solutions at any time.

One reason that we opened problems up in this way is to provide the opportunity to consider a student's online PoW submissions as an electronic portfolio.

This schedule repeats twenty (20) times during the school year in each of the six services for a total (by the end of the year) of access to 120 problems. All PoW users [Current PoW (Teacher), Full PoW Membership or School or District, Trial Account] have access to the six Current Problems.

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