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# Mathematical Problem Solving Course

### Learn how to solve non-routine problems and think like a mathematician in either the fully online or face to face course for primary and high school teachers.

A 6-weeks fully online course was designed in partnership with Limina Education Services. Upon completing the intensive weekly course, teachers are tasked with completing a final assessment in the form of an online, randomised multiple-choice test designed to assess the knowledge and skills they acquired during the course.

The multiple-choice questions are carefully selected and graded from easy to hard to ensure that they provide an accurate measure of each teacher’s understanding of core concepts and ability to apply them in real-world scenarios.

The course has been developed by Alwyn Olivier and Dr Erna Lampen. It is a self-paced fully online course. Teachers must commit to work 2-3 hours per week on the course and attend weekly live sessions.

#### Course units:

Unit 1: What is a Problem?

Unit 2: Control the Problem-Solving Process

Unit 3: Focus on Structure

Unit 4: The Power and Pitfalls of Induction

Unit 5: Think like a Mathematician - Structure,
Control, Generalise, Pose New Problems

Unit 6: Think Like a Mathematician - be systematic.

#### The face to face courses are normally presented on two Saturdays and focus on the improvement of mathematical problem solving skills. It consists of the following levels:

• ##### Primary (Grades 4 - 7)

Learning about problem solving (strategies, specialisation and generalisation, induction and deduction). Medium through which the course is presented is through problem solving, i.e. teachers learn to solve problems by problem solving.  The end objective is that teachers will enter and prepare their learners for the South African Mathematics Challenge.

• ##### GET Level 1

Introduction to problem solving strategies; offered to all teachers who are doing the course for the first time. The course comprises of the Junior First Round questions of the South African Mathematics Olympiad and involves a range of problem solving strategies.

• ##### GET Level 2

Offered to all teachers who have passed GET Level 1 or FET Level 1.  The course comprises of the Junior Second Round questions of the South African Mathematics Olympiad and involves a range of problem solving strategies.

• ##### GET Level 3

Offered to all teachers who have passed GET Level 1, GET Level 2 or FET Level 1. The course comprises of the Junior Third Round questions of the South African Mathematics Olympiad and involves a range of advanced problem solving strategies including producing a convincing proof or argument to substantiate a certain conclusion.

• ##### FET Level 1

Offered to all teachers who have passed GET Level 1.  The course comprises of the Senior First Round questions of the South African Mathematics Olympiad and involves a range of problem solving strategies.

#### Assessment & Certification:

Assessment will take on the form of a test which will inform the process of awarding Certificates of Achievement.

The teachers will be awarded certificates as follows:

• 50% and above but less than 75% will receive a pass certificate.
• 75% and above will receive a merit certificate.

All levels are endorsed by the South African Council of Educators and can be used for continuous professional development (CPD points are awarded per level).

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