on 6 May 2014
This is a fantastic book to get the little grey cells working. A great help for maths teachers too! I bought it with my students in mind but I must say that it is great fun in itself! I did do the online course with Dr Starbird on Effective Thinking Through Mathematics with EdEx. That is the way I found out about the book. I can thoroughly recommend it to anyone that likes puzzles, thinking exercises, etc.
What's so good about this book ?
1. Review the basics, master the basics and review them often. This little piece of advice is priceless, as it keeps information fresh in your mind, and allows you to really master the baby stuff, for a firm foundation to your knowledge.
2. Fail to succeed. If you're stuck, deliberately try out things you know will fail. That way you will understand how something works more deeply, but will usually circumvent any blocks. Normally this trick will get you back on track, with new ideas.
There are many ideas in this book. It insists that you fail, for say 10% of your work. In order to master new creative ideas. This "fail to succeed" idea is fantastic, as if you're blocked in writing a report, or don't know where to start, it gives you permission to fail, and that starts you off.
on 13 June 2015
This is one of the best books of its kind that I have read. It is clear and concise, but best of all makes it easy to remember the principles involved by using the ancient concept of the elements as mnemonics. As a result of reading this book I have made improvements in several practical areas of my life. Now I am looking forward to reading it a second time, and applying more of the exercises.