This unit is designed for use with seventh and eighth grade students as a supplemental activity and as an aid to develop problem solving techniques. This unit would be most beneficial if introduced in the beginning of the school year so that students may develop an understanding of the vocabulary and processes involved, then students may be encouraged to use this alternative method of problem solving throughout the school year.
The attractiveness of computers, computer languages, and computer games is evident, creating in this attractiveness a powerful and motivational learning tool. We have all seen our students on Saturday afternoons, pouring quarters into Space invaders machines or playing with electronic games. We cannot ignore the fact that computers are increasingly becoming part of our daily lives, and particularly,our students lives. Our students will undoubtedly be dealing with and operating computers in any career they choose. An early introduction of the student to computers and its use in problem solving will ensure, for the student, a certain degree of literacy and, proficiency in the usage of computers. We must help them relinquish their misconceptions that math and computers are beyond common knowledge and interesting to only a few crazed mathematicians while helping them develop a healthy attitude towards problem solving. All students would benefit from an introduction into the world of computers.