Effectiveness of Teaching Mathematical Problem-Solving Strategies to Students with Mild Intellectual Disabilities

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Oktay Göktaş, Ersen Yazıcı

Abstract

This study aims to examine the impact of teaching problem-solving strategies conducted during math class, to
students with mild intellectual disabilities on their success in problem-solving. One of the qualitative research methods, the
teaching experiment, was used in this study. The participants' group of the study consists of three students from the high
school group of special education who were selected by the criterion-sampling method, one of the purposeful sampling
techniques. The teaching of intelligent guessing and testing, making a drawing (making a drawing shape, schema, and
diagram), and working backwards strategy, all of which are from the problem-solving strategies, was performed using the
direct instruction method in accordance with teaching experiment methodology. During the teaching process, eight problems
were taught and solved, including 4 in each strategy course plan. In total, 24 problems relating to these three strategies were
studied, and the implementation process lasted nine weeks. The research process was recorded via a video camera, and all
recordings were transcribed and analyzed by thematic analysis. As a result, it has been concluded that the teaching of
problem-solving strategies to students with mild intellectual disabilities improves their problem-solving skills and has an
impact on the problem-solving process. In light of the findings and results, it is recommended to teach problem-solving
strategies to students with mild intellectual disabilities to improve their problem-solving skills in math class.

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