**Written by Laura Grimwad,
Algebra (Variables  Grade
5)
Stage 1 Desired Results 

Established Goals: (M5A1) Students will represent and interpret the
relationships between quantities algebraically. (M5P1) Using
the appropriate technology, students will solve problems that arise in
mathematics and in
other contexts. (M5P2) Students will investigate, develop, and
evaluate mathematical arguments. (M5P3) Students will use the language of
mathematics to express ideas precisely. (M5P5) Students will create and use pictures,
manipulatives, models, and symbols to organize, record,
and communicate mathematical ideas. 

Enduring Understandings: Students will understand that

Essential Questions:

Knowledge: Students will know§
the mathematical term: Variables

Skills:
Students will be able to
(VERBS)

Stage 2
Assessment Evidence 

Performance Tasks: 1. Students work with partners to write an expression for the following problem using a variable and explain what the variable stands for: Will gave some fiction books to a book drive. Then he gave 5 more nonfiction books. Call on several students to share and assess student understanding. 2. Student pairs write their own word problem and trade with another student pair. The students will write an expression for the traded problem using a variable and explain what the variable stands for. Students will return their problems to original student pair who will check the work. Have student pairs share any that may be questionable. Discuss the questionable problems with class. If none are questionable, then call on several pairs to share their problem and the responses they received. 3. Students write
an expression giving a value for a variable, along with an expression to
solve. (Ex: If n = 3, what is n + 7?) Share with another pair and have the
other pair solve. Give back to
original pair to check. Ask for
students to share their expression and the responses they received. Assess
understanding through class conversation and questioning. 
Other Evidence:
· Teacher observation of students working on tasks. ·
Assessment
of student work. ·
Student
pairs create problems to swap with other pairs to solve. · Assess understanding through class conversation and questioning. · Orally review vocabulary words. ·
Read Essential Question and call on several
students to give their interpretations.
Ask for any misunderstandings. 
Stage 3 Learning Plan


Begin with the following hook: Use
overhead (Attachment 1). In the top
picture you have two cars that together cost $2.00. In the bottom picture, you have a car and a
dog that together cost $5.00. What is
the price for a car? What is the price
for the dog? Explain how you found
your answer. Students work with pairs to
investigate, develop, and evaluate mathematical arguments. Vocabulary: Variables. Use the activating strategy as an example. Car + Car = $2.00; Car + Dog = $5.00. Instead of using numbers, students used representations to find out the value. Have students give their definition of a variable. Be sure students understand that a variable is a letter or symbol that can stand for any number. Example: 8 + B = 12. Be sure students understand that variables are used when an exact amount is not known. Allow students to work in pairs. Read a simple story problem to students. Have the students write an expression using variables. Dexter had three baseballs. After practice, he found several more baseballs. Write an expression using a variable. Explain what the variable stands for. (3 + B); The variable stands for the number of baseballs Dexter found after practice. On her birthday, Kristin brought 30 cupcakes to school. She gave a cupcake to each student in her class. Write an expression using a variable. Explain what the variable stands for. (30 C); The variable stands for the number of cupcakes given out. Call on several students to share their expression and explain what the variable stands for. Ask class for thumbs up if they agree. Check for understanding and clear any misconceptions. Ask students: If p = 88, what is p 30? Have students rewrite the expression substituting the value for the variable in the expression, then solve. Give Attached Sheet (Attachment 2) to assess student understanding. ***Intermath connection: Toothpicks are
used to build a rectangular grid that is 20 toothpicks long and 10 toothpicks
wide. The grid is filled with squares that have 1 toothpick on each side.
What is the total number of toothpicks used? 
Attachment 1:
Attachment 2:
Variables and Expressions Name: ______________________________
Write an expression using a
variable. Explain what the variable
stands for. 

Word Problem 
Expression 
The variable stands for 
Raul collected comic books and kept them in a shoebox. He had 21 of them. His mom put more comic books into the box. 
Raul had Mom put more (21) + (X) 21 + X 
X stands for more comic books. 
Starr had 25 pencils. She sold some of them. 
Starr had She sold some (25) (P) 25 P 
P stands for the number of pencils Starr sold. 
Lonnie had 17 baseball cards. He got a few more at the store. 


A number of cups were on the table. Kelly put 4 of them away. 


Substitute the given value
for each variable. Write the value of
each expression. 

Expression 
Explain 
The expression value is 
If n = 12, what is 6 + n? 
If n = 12, then put 12 where the n is and 6 + 12 equals 18. 
18 because 6 + 12 = 18 
If s = 14, what is s 8? 


If m = 25, what is 75 m? 


If x = 7, what is x + x + 6? 

