Math 3-6

Student-generated Problems


When students create their own number and word problems, they connect math concepts to their background knowledge and lived experiences. As a way to practice Math Communication, student-generated problems, or problem posing, promote creative reflection, sense-making, and application of students' procedural and conceptual knowledge.

Use It in the Classroom

Watch how this student shares the story problems he created. By explaining his problems and reasoning, he connects the Operations of multiplication and division with two narratives.

  • As a type of formative assessment, teachers can challenge students to write complex problems, including identifying the mathematical representation to use and incorporating their own context. Letting students construct equations that expand beyond just word problems also makes math more meaningful.
  • Design It into Your Product

    Videos are chosen as examples of strategies in action. These choices are not endorsements of the products or evidence of use of research to develop the feature.

    Learn how products like Shooloo allow students and teachers to create videos of word problems. When creating their own problems, students build their Metacognition and also tie in their own interests, making math more relevant to them.

  • Products can serve as platforms for students to create and widely share their own problems. Problems that involve Geometric Reasoning are particularly powerful because of the affordances of technology to create dynamic visualizations. Seeing and solving problems written by their peers fosters Motivation and excitement for learning.
  • Factors Supported by this Strategy