I am always amazed at how students will respond to a challenge. Over the the last year when students have completed their work, I have begun to use different puzzle websites to challenge them. I would say, “Hey, I heard that this is really hard puzzle and I don’t think many people have solved it why don’t you try to solve it?” I was amazed at how many students step up to the plate and would try and solve these puzzles. As they began to work on them and other students finished their work they would join them and before long I would have groups of 3 to 4 students engaged and working together to try and solve these puzzles. It was fantastic to see and listen to the students interacting to solve a common goal. Here are just a couple of the websites that I have used, give them a try you will be surprised at how engaged your students will become.
- Project Euler as teaching tool (gasstationwithoutpumps.wordpress.com)
- Learn to Program By Giving Yourself Open Ended Problems to Solve (readwriteweb.com)
- Exercise Your Brain! (kozar.wordpress.com)
- A Google-a-Day Puzzle for Thursday, June 9th (wired.com)