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Puzzling Squares – a Year 3 Investigation

In this investigation, children rehearse adding three single-digit numbers with the aim of making a total of 10. They will recall number facts to help solve the problem, relying on and consolidating number bonds to 10. They will test what happens when numbers are placed in different grid positions, working towards recognising different outcomes when odd or even numbers are placed on corners. Subsequent explanations will require some generalisations.

Recognising and articulating that you have encountered a problem or sticking-point is a key feature of thinking mathematically displayed by this learner. It might be a frustrating point on the journey towards solving the problem, but should be met with confidence rather than anxiety. The learner in this example was confident enough to persevere, engaging a positive, can-do mindset. Such resilience is a key skill in the problem-solver’s repertoire.

Download the Puzzling Squares Investigation.

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