Math Problem Solving Freebie: Teaching Perseverance

Rated 4.89 out of 5, based on 89 reviews
89 Ratings
The Teacher Studio
Grade Levels
4th - 6th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
5 pages
The Teacher Studio


Looking for some tips on how to improve problem solving while increasing student perseverance in the classroom? This freebie gives you some ready-to-use tips as well as a high quality math problem for you to try with your own students!

Teaching students to persevere may be one of the most valuable skills we give them as mathematicians--but it is a skill that DOES need to be explicitly taught. This problem is perfect to use as a class warmup or for small groups to really get that accountable math talk going. Teaching tips are included and this free task is provided in a full page version that allows students to write about their thinking as well as a version with 6 per page for a low ink, low paper alternative that can be cut and glued into notebooks.

Like what you see? This freebie is a small representation of what you can get in my "Digging Deeper into Problem Solving: A Resource to Teach Perseverance". Your students will learn to LOVE the challenge and you can change their beliefs about what it means to be "Good At Math!"

Click here to check it out!

You might also be interested in my many other word problem sets, open ended math challenges, and other products geared at pushing students' mathematical thinking. Here are a few to get you started!

Open Ended Math Challenges Set 1

Open Ended Math Challenges Set 2

Common Core Word Problem Bundle Grades 4-5

Mind Boggling Math

All rights reserved by ©The Teacher Studio. Purchase of this problem set entitles the purchaser the right to reproduce the pages in limited quantities for single classroom use only. Duplication for an entire school, an entire school system, or commercial purposes is strictly forbidden without written permission from the author at Additional licenses are available at a reduced price.

Total Pages
5 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
Report this resource to TPT
Reported resources will be reviewed by our team. Report this resource to let us know if this resource violates TPT’s content guidelines.


to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. Mathematically proficient students start by explaining to themselves the meaning of a problem and looking for entry points to its solution. They analyze givens, constraints, relationships, and goals. They make conjectures about the form and meaning of the solution and plan a solution pathway rather than simply jumping into a solution attempt. They consider analogous problems, and try special cases and simpler forms of the original problem in order to gain insight into its solution. They monitor and evaluate their progress and change course if necessary. Older students might, depending on the context of the problem, transform algebraic expressions or change the viewing window on their graphing calculator to get the information they need. Mathematically proficient students can explain correspondences between equations, verbal descriptions, tables, and graphs or draw diagrams of important features and relationships, graph data, and search for regularity or trends. Younger students might rely on using concrete objects or pictures to help conceptualize and solve a problem. Mathematically proficient students check their answers to problems using a different method, and they continually ask themselves, "Does this make sense?" They can understand the approaches of others to solving complex problems and identify correspondences between different approaches.
Reason abstractly and quantitatively. Mathematically proficient students make sense of quantities and their relationships in problem situations. They bring two complementary abilities to bear on problems involving quantitative relationships: the ability to decontextualize-to abstract a given situation and represent it symbolically and manipulate the representing symbols as if they have a life of their own, without necessarily attending to their referents-and the ability to contextualize, to pause as needed during the manipulation process in order to probe into the referents for the symbols involved. Quantitative reasoning entails habits of creating a coherent representation of the problem at hand; considering the units involved; attending to the meaning of quantities, not just how to compute them; and knowing and flexibly using different properties of operations and objects.
Attend to precision. Mathematically proficient students try to communicate precisely to others. They try to use clear definitions in discussion with others and in their own reasoning. They state the meaning of the symbols they choose, including using the equal sign consistently and appropriately. They are careful about specifying units of measure, and labeling axes to clarify the correspondence with quantities in a problem. They calculate accurately and efficiently, express numerical answers with a degree of precision appropriate for the problem context. In the elementary grades, students give carefully formulated explanations to each other. By the time they reach high school they have learned to examine claims and make explicit use of definitions.


Questions & Answers


TPT empowers educators to teach at their best.

More About Us

Keep in Touch!

Sign Up