Math Teaching Resources

Review of the NickleBee Math Problem Solving and Heuristics Worksheets (Mr Zhou; NickleBee Tutors; 2019; 3rd Edition)
Recommended for Students looking for a Comprehensive and In-Depth Resource to score A*/A in PSLE Maths!

Review updated by Mr Zhou (NickleBee Tutors) in Dec 2018


The NickleBee Math Problem Solving and Heuristics Worksheets by Mr Zhou (NickleBee Tutors) is the cumulation of years of experience and feedback and is designed specifically for Primary 4, 5 and 6 students looking for a comprehensive resource that will provide the requisite practice and challenge to score A* / A for PSLE Math!

Altogether they contain hundreds of examples and practice questions teaching our students the C3PO™ Math Problem Solving Framework (including ALL 11 Heuristics tools and 18 Problem Solving Concepts) and training them on the appropriate usage of our proprietary UNITARY Method (Version 2.0)!

The worksheets help to reinforce math concepts and heuristic knowledge and provides guidance to the student's thought process in an engaging and non-didactic way. This allows the students to internalize the problem solving conceptual knowledge and procedural strategies required in a meaningful manner and help them improve in their math problem solving skills.

Each worksheet also contains a selection of challenging questions for the students to test their grasp of math problem solving techniques learnt across challenging or math-competition type questions of various contexts. This prepares students well for the PSLE which in recent years have been featuring math olympiad type questions in the exams. 

The 2019 edition has been updated based on the new syllabus exam trends that we have analyzed from dozens of school exam papers and the recent 2018 PSLE exam! More specifically, the worksheets have been updated to focus on advanced critical thinking skills, spatial / tabular analysis, and appropriate application of heuristics to unfamiliar questions. 



Review of the "ThinkingMath @ Onsponge" Series (Ammiel Wan, Chris Rogers & Corine Quek; 2008)
Recommended for the Mid-Ability Math Student looking for that extra edge in PSLE Maths!

Review updated by Mr Zhou (NickleBee Tutors) in Dec 2015




The Onsponge books are an excellent resource (if a bit dated) for mid-ability students who require a comprehensive and systematic grounding of the various conceptual and procedural knowledge required to ace Problem Sums in the Math Paper 2. 

I personally feel that the some of the procedural knowledge (problem-solving methods) as taught in the Onsponge Books are quite cumbersome and rather lacking in fineness as they seem geared towards higher ability students who already have a working knowledge of problem solving and are just looking for a boost to fine tune the nuances of their problem solving capability. 

For other students who are still in the process of improving their problem solving skills, the way the books are structured has an unfortunate and unintended side-effect (if not taught correctly) of encouraging rote learning and blind application of methods (based on how the child thinks the question should be categorized) without understanding that problem solving is a process where the means is very much as important as the ends.

Just a note that we longer use the Onsponge books for our students since 2015. Instead our students now use our proprietary "NickleBee Math Problem Solving and Heuristic Worksheets". 


I would recommend that parents and educators use the "Visible Thinking in Maths Series by Ammiel Wan" to improve on their child's basic mathematical concepts (as tested in Math Paper 1) after which they should then follow up on "GetMeThinking" or "OnSponge" to further enhance their child's intermediate and advanced problem solving skills (as usually tested in Math Paper 2).

The ThinkingMath @ Onsponge can be bought from the ThinkingMath Webstore at http://www.onsponge.com/shop/thinkingmathshop.html



An Review of "Visible Thinking in Mathematics" written by Mr Ammiel Wan (Marshall Cavendish, 2013, 2nd Ed)
For Weaker Students looking for a Resource to help with their Basic Mathematical Knowledge and Concepts!

Review updated by Mr Zhou (NickleBee Tutors) in Dec 2015


The Visible Thinking in Mathematics series are aimed at helping weaker students improve their basic mathematical concepts and computational skills through the use of the Cognitive Conceptual Approach.  It does so by emphasizing the development of the student's computational and knowledge recall skills while helping students progress from the pictorial stage to the abstract stage of mathematical learning.

This book starts from the basics and helps get the child used to a thinking and reasoning based approach rather than a rote-learning approach of learning basic mathematical concepts. This book helps the parent or educator to cultivate the child's thinking skills and direct the student's thought process on key concepts. And in so doing, the student would be better able to integrate the Problem solving concepts and Heuristics as they come along later.

The 2nd edition includes a variety of problem-solving questions in each chapter so as to expose the students to basic problem-solving skills as tested in Paper 2. This new addition helps to ease the students into the more complex problem solving skills and procedural knowledge that they learn later.

Overall, i think "Visible Thinking in Mathematics" is a good "Broad-Based" resource (as compared to "OnSponge" which only focuses on Problem Sums) to help them build up their fundamentals while improving their thinking skills and understanding of mathematical concepts. 

I would recommend that parents and educators use the "Visible Thinking in Maths Series by Ammiel Wan" to improve on their child's basic mathematical concepts (as tested in Math Paper 1) after which they should then follow up on "GetMeThinking" or "OnSponge" to further enhance their child's intermediate and advanced problem solving skills (as usually tested in Math Paper 2).

Visible Thinking in Mathematics are available from any Popular Bookstore.