Apply
logic to solve puzzles – that’s all it is. And there’s a systematic science to
it.

Most
children love activity books. This proves their innate need to be challenged
and mentally stimulated. Maths puzzles tap into this instinctive desire to
stretch children’s minds.

Challenging Maths questions challenge them to find
and apply faster, more creative solutions. This trains them in higher-order
thinking and decision-making skills on top of subject knowledge.

Now,
don’t we all apply these skills at home, at work and at play? Therefore,
heuristics practically take children beyond school, right through their lives.

Heuristics in PSLE Maths

More
than half of PSLE Maths marks go to heuristics-related questions.

Approximately
55% of PSLE Maths marks are dedicated to long, open-ended questions that
necessitate problem-solving. Several are routine questions, easily solved using
the four basic operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and
division. Many are non-routine questions, requiring the four basic operations
AND problem-solving heuristics.

The
Ministry of Education has identified 11 heuristics for primary-level Maths, and
two more for secondary-level Maths.

1. Use Diagrams / Models 2. Act it Out 3. Use Before & After 4. Use Systematic Listing 5. Look for Patterns 6. Work Backwards 7. Use Guess & Check 8. Simplify the Problem 9. Make Supposition 10. Solve Part of the Problem 11. Paraphrase the Problem | ||

12. Think of a Related Problem 13. Use Equation | ||

Source: Ministry of Education of Singapore (2007). Mathematical Syllabus Primary. Singapore: Curriculum Planning and Development Division. |

**Opening Hearts & Minds**

**Accertation**

We teach students problem-solving heuristics. Students simply add this new information (heuristics) into their existing mindset.

**Tunning**

We guide students in heuristics application. Students begin to realise the limitations of their existing mindset. They begin to modify their existing mindset to incorporate heuristics.

**Restructuring**

We expose students to the variety of challenging Maths problems that necessitates heuristics application. Students begin to address the inconsistencies between their existing mindset and heuristics. They begin to recreate their existing mindset to feature heuristics.

**Understanding the problem**

Students will be trained to look for, visualise, organise and connect information. They will also develop Maths language proficiency.

**Choose an appropriate heuristics**

Students will learn how to select, and combine where necessary, the most appropriate heuristics for different problems.

**Perform the chosen heuristics**

Students will develop computational skills, geometrical skills and logical reasoning.

**Reflect**

Finally, students will be trained to check their solutions, to improve on the methods used, to seek alternative solutions, and to extend the methods to other problems.

Click here to know more about Heuristics Maths.

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