Parking Garage

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SWBAT convert measurements, make and analyze line plot data.

Big Idea

Determine which plan is the best one for the parking garage.

Warm Up

10 minutes

Since this is my "test prep" unit, it's important to note that these standards have all been covered already this year, but may not be mastered by all of my students. To re-introduce the topic of making and analyzing line plots, we use technology to do so with this link: Interpret Line Plots. This site also offers a ton of other mini games for other standards. it's important to me to use some aspect of technology in all of my lessons if I can. Even just simply using technology for a few minutes, like in this intro, students can "buy in", when otherwise they may not be interested.

Guided Practice

20 minutes

In this task, we discuss a parking garage. Most of my students have seen a parking garage before, as they've visited our nearest city about 45 min. away. If you live much further away than that, you may wish to really set up the problem by explaining overcrowding in an area like a city. Before we get started, I ensure that my students have a frame of reference of the purpose of a parking garage. You can also tie in Social Studies standards possibly here too: rural/urban areas.

I really believe that students learn best through inquiry, and hopefully you'll see this throughout the lessons that I've created. When helping my students interpret data, it's important to me that they come to their own conclusions; this can often be done with a partner in a Think-Pair-Share. I use open-ended question like, “What does the graph show?” in order to get my students thinking. This way, I can see the level of how each student is looking at the data. I can then coach them into higher level thinking. I try to do this typically with the last question of each lesson as well; this usually involves just a bit of writing and explanation from each student.

a) Uses MP4 (Model with mathematics), and is a Level 2 DOK; here students make a line plot for the given data.

(b) Uses MP2 (Reason abstractly and quantitatively), and is a Level 2 DOK; here students analyze information in a line plot.

(c) Uses MP1 (Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them), and is a Level 2 DOK; here students use information from a line plot to solve a real-world problem.

(d) uses MP1 (Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them), and is a Level 1 DOK; here students convert measurements within the customary system.


Independent Practice

20 minutes

In the (a) section, I'm looking for students to correctly make a line plot. I remind students to first choose their mixed number intervals. It's important here to check students' line plots by crossing off the numbers in the data table.

In the (b) section, I'm looking for students to correctly calculate weight. Here, you can suggest students use what they know about writing expressions to solve this problem.

In the (c) section, I'm looking for students to choose the correct operation and perform calculations correctly. I encourage students to divide the total weight of all the sandbags by the number of sandbags.

In the (d) section, I'm looking for students to correct convert the measurement. Here I remind students to look carefully at their answer to (c). Then, students can use the whole number part of the answer and the fraction separately to solve the problem.

In the (e) section, I'm looking for students to determine the most practical idea, and provide an explanation of their mathematical thinking.  

My students, especially this year, need very simple, concrete expectations. Using a rubric consistently helps to let then know what to expect, and how they will be evaluated. I typically show my students the rubric beforehand, which is something that might not be a common practice with other teachers who use rubrics in their classrooms. I feel that this is a much more effective way to teach my particular students, and it might work well for you too.

In this video clip, you'll see one of my students explain why he thinks that Ryan's plan for the parking garage is a better plan.


10 minutes

You'll notice that I assigned independent practice today instead of Paired Practice. I try to switch up paired and independent practice from day to day. Therefore, during closure today it's important for me to give my students an opportunity to be respectful of others' ideas, reflect on their own, and ask questions of others (in regards to math practices). Students exchange ideas here, and determine if their reasoning differs. As I'm walking around facilitating, I'm evaluating, commenting to groups, and then bringing everyone back together to talk about common themes. Here, most students thought that Ryan's idea was the best idea because the sandbags weigh more; it was nearly a consensus.