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Mukaziwanga

Singapore math challenging word problems as supplement - how challenging is it?

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We have just started using CWP 2 with my 7 year old who is halfway through RSM C. I have heard many RSM families say they supplement with this to improve problem solving. Some of the problems seem very difficult for him. The computation part is easy but the set up seems to stump him at times. This is obviously evidence that we do indeed need this supplement but I'm wondering if I've chosen the right level. He's 8 in June, very competent in computation, but not wholly confident. Should we perhaps have started with book 1? We are not in the US so it's not particularly cheap to purchase another book.

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I wouldn't necessarily start with an earlier book, but I would purchase Process Skills in Problem Solving.  It has better instruction in the method used in CWP.  But not enough practice.  CWP picks up the slack in the practice.  

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Could you try Singapore FAN Math Process Skills in Problem Solving instead? I know purchasing another book wouldn't be ideal, but I really think he'd do better with it and you could then use your CWP to practice what he learns. 

 

It's much better in terms of scaffolding and instruction compared to CWP. It has full solutions worked out for every problem as well. I also prefer it as a supplement because it's smaller.

 

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CWP is painful at L4 and higher. Lower levels aren't that bad, but still harder than average. They are not a teaching series (it's got maybe 2 examples per section). For more explicit teaching of problem solving strategies the process skills books are fantastic.

 

That said, they are great for what they are designed to do: stretch the student and force them to apply concepts and see solutions as a whole rather than as a series of random steps.

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My recommendation would be to continue using the CWP book that you have, but work it out together. Solve the questions out loud along with him, and model your thought process to him. He will learn from doing it with you!

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Thanks for all your feedback. I think we might need to look into the fan process skills book or see if I can find something similar locally. I wish I had known about it before! I do sit with him through it but I feel like I have to drip feed so much I have almost done the problem for him. Something that explains the 'how' a bit better will probably be confidence boosting for him, which we could really do with.

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