THE FUNCTION OF CREATIVITY IN THE SOLUTION OF IRREGULAR SEQUENCE PROBLEMS AMONG 5TH-TO-7TH GRADE STUDENTS AS COMPARED WITH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL MATHEMATICS TEACHERS AND TEACHER TRAINEES IN OTHER DISCIPLINES
ResumoThis study was conducted following the article “The function of creativity in the solution of irregular sequence problems among elementary school mathematics teachers and teacher trainees in other disciplines” (Gazit & Patkin, 2009). That article examined elementary mathematics teachers and teacher-trainees ability to solve irregular challenging problems of sequences in general rather than numerical sequences only. The present article aims to present the results of a study examining the function of creativity in solving irregular sequence problems in 5th-7th grade students at a democratic school, and in comparison with the Gazit and Patkin (ibid.) study population. The findings show that the more the question deals with a less-common sequence and demands open thinking associated with creative thinking, the lower the level of coping. Another and almost surprising finding show that the ability of students in grades 5-7 to solve irregular sequence problems is no lesser than that of teachers and teacher trainees. An obvious conclusion is the need to deepen and broaden the teaching of irregular-problem solving at all school age levels, including teacher trainee and to devote time for developing creative thinking.