PROBLEM SOLVING :
PROBLEM SOLVING is defined as those skills in critical thinking and /or logic that allow one to arrive at a previously unattained personal solution . Personally unattained solution means that the solution is different and is generated from original thinking .
Problem solving requires the following elements
A desire to solve the problem
base of earlier experiences
a group of possible actions or solutions
the resources to monitor actions or solutions
the control to effect changes in the actions
The path followed in problem solving are :
1. Initial state
2. Goal state
3. Both mental and physical solutions shld be allowed .
The following steps in problem solving are 1.
1. State the problem
2. Study the background factors
3. List the potential solutions
4. pre-evaluate the consequences of each soln over a period of time .
5. Decide on a solution .
6. Carry out the soln
7. Confirm that the soln has indeed solved the problem.
VALUES IN PROBLEM SOLVING:
- increases self confidence and gives experience in solving similar problems.
- Creates a sense of being self directed, use self motivation
- tends to increase knowledge and experience base, and it is cumulative.
- It adds to the repertoire of possible solutions or actions. It is knowing the possibilities, understanding of what is workable or not .
- It enhances analysis, and decision making skills, and provides practice at solving problems.
- Problem solving software seems to increase a person's ability to deal with change or to alter the circumstances.
There are three types of problem solving soft wares:
1. Skill-centered problem solving software: - to teach and reinforce general problem solving skills eg. The factory , test a machine , make a product , Build a Factory , The pond , Puzzle Tanks - have three levels of difficulty -easy , medium , or hard .
2. Subject-centered problem solving software: - designed to teach and solve problem within a given subject area e.g. . Car Builder, Botanical Gardens, Teasers by Tobbs, the Incredible Laboratory, Green Globs based on Algebra , Those Reading Machines series which addresses reading and writing skills . In this type the student should have knowledge of the subject to draw from previous experiences and information .
3. General Software: - used to develop problem solving skills by teachers successfully though the software was not designed for the same. e.g. Heart of Africa , Lunar Explorer , Millionaire II , Battle Chess , Sargon IV based on chess , Wilderness .
In these soft wares the student develop very versatile skills like map reading , adventure , link history with geography , learn simulation of stock market and learn to take major steps to solve the problem .