1 Reply Latest reply: Mar 26, 2012 3:11 PM by caroldodson RSS

favorite problem solving resources

mcoleman New User
Currently Being Moderated

I am teaching a senior math course next year for students who managed to get through algebra 2 (or maybe not) but have no intention of ever taking calculus.  So they are not interested in a precalculus course.  This is a redesigned course starting next year.  Unfortunately, the predecessor course is not due for new textbooks for a couple years, so I am expected to create everything myself.  We are calling the course, Quantitative Reasoning, and the goal is to make the mathematics meaningful. We will do a lot of algebra and geometry, but we will also spend time on probability and statistics and some discrete math topics.


Without going through all the many stages of my thought process over the last 2 months, I'll just say I've come to the realization that my sanity will be much better preserved if I can find a few resources with pages I can copy to hand out in class. I believe I will have some limited funds to spend on this.  I'm not really looking for drill and kill worksheets.  I'm hoping to find something a little more meaningful.


I think the best place to start with this population of students is just to do some development of their problem solving skills.  I know this has been lacking from their previous mathematics experiences, so I think it's the best place to start.  Does anyone know of a good program for teaching problem solving - especially to struggling students?  Obviously I'll be pulling lessons from Illuminations and similar sites all year, but I'm hoping there is a book out there that walks through a good approach to problem solving AND that has blackline masters or reproducible pages to give students.  This is typically not a group of students who take very good notes, and I want to get the year off on the right foot.  Any recommendations would be appreciated


While we're at it, I have 2 books that I will use at various times in the year: Baker's Choice to review algebra skills in the context of linear programming, and Is Democracy Fair? to introduce the mathematics of approtionment and voting. Does anyone know of any resources (again reporducible programs) for any of these topics:

graph theory (networks and circuits, etc.)

consumer mathematics




Thanks in advance for your help with this.  I really hope I don't have to spend all next year re-inventing the wheel.



  • Re: favorite problem solving resources
    caroldodson New User
    Currently Being Moderated

    I asked Jaime Kautz, our ORC mathematics specialist, and she gave a couple of terrific suggestions. I'm pasting her email below.


    Doug Foley, a math education prof at Ohio University, has been writing a textbook exactly for this purpose.  I’m not sure what stage it’s in, but it might be worthwhile for her to email him. 

    Also, I taught a course at the University of Cincinnati that was for liberal arts majors.  It was really a course on being a mathematically literate citizen and speaks directly to the topics she wants to cover.  The book is For All Practical Purposes, by COMAP.  Could she possibly get a copy from OhioLink?

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