```The PuzzleTom Jensen                     Bloom High School                               10th & Dixie Hwy                               Chicago Hts IL 60411                               708-755-1122Objective(s):     The main objective of the Mini-teach is to make students aware of some of the ways they process information so that they may become more skilled.  To develop Thinking Skills in science students.Materials needed:     A puzzle (preferable manipulative, not crosswords, etc.) of sufficient difficulty to challenge even the best students at the teaching level.  This miniteach used a spectral color matching puzzle with many, many incorrect trials but apparently only one correct solution.  There should be one puzzle per student. Strategy:     1. The puzzle is introduced to the class by giving each student a puzzle.  The students are told to look at the puzzle carefully and record any and all particulars of the puzzle.  Time allotted for the part of the exercise will vary with grade level and complexity of the puzzle.     2. As students begin completing step 1, start a discussion about the puzzle.  Typically this will include size, color, shape, number of parts, patterns, similarity (or differences) of parts, etc.  Before the discussion ends it is important that each student knows the point of the puzzle.  Note - they have not
yet been asked to solve the puzzle.     3. After the discussion of the puzzle the students are given the following assignment.  The student is to formulate a clear method of solving the puzzle.  The solution is to be written in such a way as to be used by anyone at this grade level to quickly solve the puzzle.  Note - they have not yet been asked to
solve the puzzle.     4.After allowing sufficient time to formulate a solution bring the students into cooperative groups and allow them to formulate one grand unified solution to the puzzle.  The grand unified solution is carefully put in writing and given to the teacher. Performance Assessment:     The teacher takes each of the grand unified solutions and distributes them to each cooperative group, being careful not to give a group their own solution.  Each group is now told to solve the puzzle using the grand unified solution they have been given.  Time needed to solve the puzzle is to be recorded.     A scoring rubric may be developed based on any number of criteria, such as clarity of instructions, shortest time for a solution, brevity, reduction of incorrect trials etc.  The winner gets a big hand.  See the Sample.Scoring Rubric (Sample)

5 Points-  The solution was clear, concise and allowed anyone to solve the puzzle in less than 3 minutes.  It included the mathematical possibilities of the number of incorrect trials as well as the number of possible correct solutions.  It also noted the puzzle color very nearly matched the visible spectrum as learned in physics.  Finally it provided a painless solution for eliminating the national debt. 4 Points-  The solution was clear and allowed the puzzle to be solved in less than 10 minutes with a minimum of wrong moves.3 Points-  The solution worked, but was long and/or difficult to understand.  Time was wasted modifying the solution.2 Points-  Some order and logic existed in the solution.  It was unclear and allowed you to make the same errors repeatedly.1 Point-  Solution was Trial & Error.0 Points-  Solution confused, frustrated and discouraged one from trying the puzzle.Conclusions:     An exercise such as the puzzle, attempted at the high school level should include the following thinking skills:     1.   Attributing     2.   Analyzing     3.   Predicting     4.   Comparing/Contrasting     5.   Inferring     6.   Problem Solving     7.   (Cause & Effect depending on the puzzle)     In the discussion follow each step in the strategy the appropriate thinking skill(s) should be mentioned by name and discussed.  Example after step 1  Attributing (observations) and comparing and contrasting would probably be appropriate.  Eventually the students should begin to be aware of how they think and become more skillful thinkers and learn some physics.```