Problem solving is an important skill which students should be encouraged to develop over a period of time. With careful planning it is possible to move from a classroom environment where individual lessons are devoted to problem-solving to one where the majority of the teaching and learning is done through problem solving. In this way students experience problem-solving on a daily basis, get into the habit of thinking about their maths and to applying knowledge they already have to tackle something new. This also helps them to see how different topics in maths are connected.
The documents below focus on teaching mathematical topics through problem-solving contexts and enquiry-oriented environments which are characterised by the teacher ‘helping’ students construct a deep understanding of mathematical ideas and processes by engaging them in doing mathematics: creating, conjecturing, exploring, testing, and verifying.