Understand the problem:

Review as needed to understand the terms. What are you asked to find or show? Can you restate in your own words?

Devise a plan and carry it out:

Polya mentions that there are many reasonable ways to solve problems. The skill at devising and carrying out an appropriate strategy is best learned by practicing and solving problems yourself. Strategies include

Look for a pattern

Solve a simpler problem

Draw a picture

Use a model

Consider special cases

Use a formula

Solve an equation

Guess and check

Be ingenious

Look back:

Much can be gained by taking the time to reflect and look back at what you have done, what worked, and what didnâ€™t. Doing this will enable you to predict what strategy to use to solve future problems.