Nurturing Powerful Problem Solvers
The authors of Powerful Problem Solving are leading this new professional development course, making use of Powerful Problem Solving and the companion website, http://mathforum.org/pps/, and its growing collection of classroom videos, student handouts, and resources. Each week will include reading a chapter, watching selected video clips and/or looking at student work, and tasks or projects using the skills from that chapter. This is the second course in a two-course sequence, the first course being Developing Powerful Problem Solvers.
Download syllabus [PDF].
This moderated course will be led by Max Ray-Riek, the main author of Powerful Problem Solving, with Suzanne Alejandre, Annie Fetter, Valerie Klein and Steve Weimar. It will take place online using Blackboard. The only technical requirements are a web browser and Internet access.
Who: teachers of grades 3-8
Participation requires separate purchase of the book, Powerful Problem Solving available from Heinemann or Amazon.com.
April 23 - June 4, 2015
Registration closes at 5 pm EDT on Thursday, April 23, 2015. There will be approximately 20 hours of seat-work involved in this course.
Credit: All individuals who successfully complete the course will receive a certificate indicating that they have completed 20 hours of professional development. This is equivalent to 2.0 Continuing Education Units (CEUs).
- Week 7: Organizing
- read Chapter 7
- look at multiple examples of student work
- collect different ways of organizing work from your students OR
- make a plan for how you would sequence and facilitate a sharing-out of sample student work
- Week 8: Abstracting
- read Chapter 8
- discuss the "Frog Farming" vignette
- make a video or recording of you helping students with a problem and reflect on when you helped students be more concrete and when you helped them be more abstract OR
- solve a Math Forum PoW and create a description of how you moved between concrete and abstract thinking
- Week 9: Structure
- read Chapter 9
- solve multiple Math Forum PoWs and work with colleagues from the course or your own school to determine what makes the problems similar, what problem-solving strategies or tools would help make these problems easier to solve, and how you could use this sequence of problems to introduce students to a new strategy or tool
- Week 10: The Problem-Solving Process
- read Chapter 10
- watch video of students engaged in problem solving OR
- make a video of your own students engaged in problem solving
- identify the phases of problem solving students go through
- compare novice and expert problem solving processes
- Week 11: Conclusion
- read Chapter 11
- share a reflection on your own learning
- make plans for continuing the conversation
- Week 12: Surveys & sharing final videos
- take a short survey about the course
- share a video or product you created during the course with colleagues
Please email me with any questions.
Max Ray-Riek, Professional Collaboration Facilitator