Puzzle Day Rundown

In case you missed my posts about CS50, check them out from August. I finally got to put all that learning to IMG_1028practice this week when the students arrived at school. Puzzle Day is an event conducted by CS50 during the first weekend of school as an ice-breaker type of activity where people arrive in teams to solve a series of brain-teasers and word challenges as well as get to know each other. The intellectual goal here is to get students thinking algorithmically. After learning about this event, I thought that it would be awesome to do with jigsaw puzzles in high school, since students at that age need to learn by seeing and touching a lot more than college students. The benefit to this is that it wound up being an incredible way to visually show different problem solving strategies at work, something we often have huge amounts of trouble with as teachers. I’ve made a power point of that for anyone to use, which you can access here. Check it out, as it includes all of the lessons learned from this activity and a whole slew of pictures.