Math Project-Based Learning: Two-Step Word Problems, Unknown Quantities | 3rd


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This 5-day project-based math resource applies math concepts in a real-world scenario to teach students about solving two-step word problems with unknown quantities. In this 5-day unit, students will solve multi-step word problems including all four operations (adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing) to figure out information that they need in order to open their bookstore. This multi-step word problem math project is engaging and authentic. Plus, it’s available as both a digital and print resource.


This project-based math resource covers concepts of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division in multi-step word problems with unknown quantities and is aligned with the following 3rd Grade Math Common Core State Standards:


  • Solve two-step word problems using the four operations. Represent these problems using equations with a letter standing for the unknown quantity. Assess the reasonableness of answers using mental computation and estimation strategies including rounding.


This resource is available in both Printable & Digital Google Slides versions.


Note: While this resource is aligned with third grade Common Core standards, it is a challenging resource and should be used toward the end of the year or as review with older students. Some word problems may have three steps instead of two.


What’s included in this resource:

  • Background Knowledge: Using a KWL, students will build background knowledge around opening a bookstore.
  • Word Problem Concepts: Students will review words that indicate the type of word problem they’re solving: addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.
  • Two-Step Word Problems: Students will learn the steps to follow for solving multi-step word problems.
  • Unknown Quantities: Students will learn that letters can be used to represent unknown quantities in a math equation and write equations using a letter to represent the unknown quantity.



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