Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in
exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I
compensated in any other way.
When we were offered the opportunity to review a product from The Critical Thinking Co.™ , it wasn’t hard to decide that my boys would enjoy Mastering Logic & Math Problem Solving. Several of them enjoy puzzles, and even though the book is advertised for grades 6-9, I knew several of them outside that age range would like to try out the problems in the book.
I didn’t use this book for formal classes. I just printed out several pages at a time and left them lay on the table until someone picked them up and started working on them. Mr. Intellectual (grade 11?) was probably the most interested, followed by Simon. Mr. Diligence (grade 9) is the only one within the range of this book. He isn’t the type to really get into this type of activity, but he did help solve a number of them. (This picture shows Simon working out the first set I printed.)
The first set of pages I printed out had to do with gettting various combinations of people, animals, or things across a bridge, or over a river in a boat, without anyone or anything getting eaten. Simon and Mr. Intellectual spent a Sunday afternoon working out all of those, and quickly discovered that they were all basically the same idea.
Another week, I printed out a bunch of classical brain teasers. Several of the boys spent a couple of days mulling over the “nine dots” problem, in which they were supposed to draw four straight lines connecting all the dots. When they finally gave up and I checked the answer key, the answer was so obvious they were quite disgusted with themselves! Several of the other problems in this section, though were quite easy, and we enjoyed figuring out the answers. With the next several pages, I read out a number of the problems while dishes were being washed one evening, and we discussed them together. What fun to come up with answers to these riddles—the one we couldn’t quite figure out, though, was the lady giving a riddle to the census taker about the ages of her three children. The egg timer riddle was easy for Simon—and a great way to get him to practice his math skills a bit.
There are a lot of different types of math problems in this book. We didn’t get to the ones about ratios, proportions, percents, or even the algebra ones. I took a look at them, though, and they are fairly similar to the ones we get in our math books. That means that this book would be a great supplement for children who need more practice with algebra in real life situations. I can see us using these problems for races—who can solve them first? They would also be good for keeping up with math skills over the summer.
There are 193 pages in this book, and it is packed full of fun activities and puzzles that sharpen thinking and math skills. You can buy either the print version or the ebook for the same price; in my opinion, the ebook is more worthwhile because you can print as many copies as you want, for your own family—and it’s definitely worth getting!
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