How is this skill developed? Word problems. Logic problems. Hard Problems.
Anything requiring multi-step reasoning and strategy. Nothing elicits greater
fear and trepidation from a student than
a complex word problem. But no solution
generates greater satisfaction. The best way
to conquer a fear of word problems is to
become good at them. And the best way to
become good at them, is to work more of
them. Start the development of reason at a
young age; build fluency of translation between verbal and mathematical language;
embrace challenges, and the fear will never
gain a foothold. Then, with that kind of
preparation, I tell you once again that calculus itself is not very hard.
Brian Fulton earned his doctoral degree in
mathematics from Virginia Tech. He and his
wife Melanie formerly taught mathematics
at the university level, and now run a hobby farm while accuracy-checking collegiate
mathematics texts. They homeschool their
four children, supplementing the math curriculum with puzzles and problems from
their own publications. Their logic grid puzzle series, Grids For Kids, aims to develop
logical reasoning in children, and is available at www.themathprofs.com, as are some
of their math problem books.
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fear and trepidation from
a student than a complex
word problem. But no
solution generates greater