Lesson plan

Playground Puzzles

It’s time to head out onto the playground! Help Parker City design the best playground possible by having students solve real-world measurement problems.
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Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will solve real-world word problems about measurement.

(5 minutes)
  • Tell students that Parker City is trying planning a new playground for its kids.
  • Ask students what kinds of things they like to see at playgrounds. Have students guess which things take up the most room and the least room on a playground.
(10 minutes)
  • Take out a piece of chart paper and draw a rectangle on it. Label the dimensions of the rectangle 30 feet by 25 feet. This is the size of the park that will be built in Parker City.
  • Tell the class that the city wants to put in a play structure that is 24 feet wide across the long side of the park (the side that measures 30 feet). Draw a quick sketch of the play structure on the chart paper, showing that it measures 24 feet wide.
  • Say, “Parker City wants to know how much space will be left on the long side of the park if they install that play structure.” Explain that you can figure out how much space will be left by subtracting 24 feet from 30 feet to get six feet.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell students that Parker City wants to install a garden on the short side of the park (the side that measures 25 feet). The plot measures 18 feet. Ask students to compute how much space will be left on the short side of the park if the garden plot is installed.
  • Have students write their answers on paper and share out their answers with the class.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell students that they are now going to practice solving real-world problems about playground equipment.
  • Hand out the Measuring Slides and Measuring Swings worksheets.
  • Have students complete the worksheets independently.

Enrichment: Have students write their own measurement word problems about the Parker City park.

Support: Help students set up the equations to solve when completing the problems on the worksheets.

(5 minutes)
  • Assess students’ understanding by having them share their answers to the worksheet problems.
(5 minutes)
  • Have students share what else they might want to see in the Parker City playground and make up a word problem to share.

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