Maths strategy toolbox

Your mathematician’s strategy toolbox includes:

  • Do I know a similar problem?j0395714.gif
  • Guess, check and improve
  • Try a simpler problem
  • Write an equation
  • Make a list or table
  • Work backwards
  • Act it out
  • Draw a picture or graph
  • Make a model
  • Look for a pattern
  • Try all possibilities
  • Seek an exception
  • Break the problem into smaller parts
  • and ……………………….

If one way doesn’t work I just start again another way.


How to read and respond to a word based maths problem:

When mathematicians have a problem they:

  • Read & understand the problem.
  • Plan a strategy to start the problem.
  • Carry out their plan.
  • Check the result.

The steps we follow are:

  • make your prediction
  • list and work through the things you need to clarify such as words , phrases or concepts
  • identify the the BIG question
  • decide how you are going to go about solving the problem (include the strategy/ies from the Mathematician’s Toolbox you use
  • summarise the process you just went through, remember to word it so you include the initial question with your answer

One thought on “Maths strategy toolbox

  1. Lilli,
    Great work on your blog. Could you please add your Maths Mate Problem Solving solutions? There are a number of them missing.


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