Math Problem Solving Strategies and Steps

Mathematics is a subject that is considered difficult because understanding the material is not easy. Especially if there is no basis at all. The implication is that it will be difficult to work on the problems later. For that reason, it helps us to know mathematics like what for those who want to learn it because there is a very popular saying saying “don’t know then don’t love” Hehe

Do you know what math is? Understanding of mathematics can actually be answered differently depending on one’s experience, knowledge, and views on mathematics. There is no single and agreed understanding by experts. According to the origin of the word, mathematics comes from the Latin “mathema” which means learning or things learned, all of which (lessons) are related to reasoning. In Indonesia itself, mathematics was once known as “exact science” or “arithmetic”. This term is still often encountered, right! But, is it still true that mathematics is said to be an exact science or arithmetic?

Basically there are only two things that are done in mathematics, namely “how to solve” and “how to proof” (how to solve and how to prove). Problems in mathematics are also divided into two, according to one’s experience in completing it, namely whether the problem has been resolved (solved the problem) or whether the question will be solved (solving problem). Faced with the new questions that will be solved, various strategies are needed in solving the problem / problem (problem solving). In this paper, only “how to solve” will be explained or how to solve on the problem, both the problem in the form of problem solving and problem solving.

In solving the problem, there are 4 (four) steps taken:

1. Understanding Existing Questions

To be able to understand the problem, you must understand all the words and mathematical concepts used in the problem. For that, look in the dictionary, definitions, etc. for words that have not been understood or mathematical concepts that have not been understood / studied. If necessary, ask other people who know. If you have been able to answer the following questions, then you have understood the problem.
a. What was asked?
b. What is known from the question?
c. Is that information enough to solve the problem?
d. Is there anything you need to know / look for first?

2. Develop a Strategy

There are many strategies that can be used. Don’t hesitate to try one of the strategies you know to deal with the problem. In general, the strategy that was found was a strategy that was obtained after several attempts at a failed strategy.

3. Conduct Selected Strategies

This step is easier than the previous two steps. If you are able to understand the problem and determine a suitable strategy then we have answered half of the answers. Here it only takes patience and caution to carry out its strategy.

4. Looking Back at the Work That Has Been Done

This step is done if you need to develop a new strategy that is better (effective and efficient) or if you want to write a better answer.

To be able to do problem solving (problem solving), there are at least 10 capabilities that must be possessed:
  1. Understand mathematical concepts and terms;
  2. Note the similarities, differences, and analogies;
  3. Identify the most important elements and choose the right procedure;
  4. Knowing things that are not related;
  5. Assess and analyze;
  6. Visualize and interpret quantity or space;
  7. General based on several examples;
  8. Change the known method;
  9. Be confident and feel happy with the material.
All of these things can be achieved if you master the concept, have perseverance (patience), and are able to think creatively in solving problems, and do not forget to always ask God for help when experiencing difficulties in learning and to be facilitated in understanding it.

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