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This quasi-experimental research sought to determine the effectiveness of explicit instruction (EI) on a Problem Solving course, specifically on students’ problem-solving skills, creative and critical thinking skills. The 66 matched-paired participants were from the two intact classes of the Bachelor in Elementary Education students of University of Antique, Sibalom, Antique, Philippines. One group of students was taught using EI and the other group using traditional instruction (TI) for nine weeks. The statistical tool used were paired t-test, and t-test for independent samples. Results revealed both EI and TI have effectively changed the scores of the students from the pretest to the posttest performance in the problem-solving skills and creative thinking skills with a much higher confidence interval in the EI group however, no significant differences were found in the critical thinking skills. Furthermore, EI shows significantly higher mean gain scores than the TI in problem-solving skills and creative thinking skills however, no significant difference between groups in the critical thinking skills. Students in the EI group changed their perception of looking at mathematics problem-solving. They have better understanding of the problem, can identify a strategy and implement them, and can create varied ideas in solving them. Likewise, students have foster positive attitude towards EI making it an optimistic approach to venture in teaching mathematics. Hence, utilization of the lessons with EI approach is highly recommended in teaching mathematics problem-solving course in improving students’ performance