Work Backwards Problem Solving Strategy

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Each month I am tacking a different problem solving strategy this month it is working backwards.

Working backwards is sometimes the best strategy and one of the most difficult for students to understand.

I don't know about you, but solving processes like this always make more sense to me when I see them in action.

Work Backwards Problem Solving Strategy

Let's explore our opening example to illustrate how to use working backwards to solve a problem.Kids are less intimidated by the word, creative thinking, than they are a problem solving as that implies that there is a “problem”.Students need to learn to interpret what they are reading and draw out information. I have found that students’ frustration with working on “story problems” has been where to start and what information do you need.Still later, the first Prince awoke, went to the kitchen, and ate 1/4 of the remaining mangoes.Even later, his brother, the second Prince, ate 1/3 of what was then left.We want to know how many pieces of candy I started out with.Like we said, to work backwards to solve, we start at the end of the problem and undo it one step at a time.We'll see how and when to use this process to solve word problems. He give Susan 8 pieces, but she says she doesn't need that many, so she gives him 3 pieces back.He gives Mandy 7 pieces, and lastly, he gives James 5 pieces.I was one of those that didn’t understand this strategy because rarely did I read all the information.I saw numbers, key words and started putting things together but not always correctly.


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