Here's the math problem, which was released as part of a "prototype project" by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers and its university partners (see The Mathematics Common Core Toolbox website).
A group of math teachers agreed that students would need to know to solve this problem:
- The definitions of perimeter and area
- How to find perimeter and area
- The definition of a square mile
- The properties of a rectangle
- How to solve for an unknown in a perimeter
- Multiplication (up to multi-digit)
- Addition and subtraction (up to multi-digit)
The table below shows how the problem will be graded. Students get credit for finding the missing side length, for finding the area of the park, and for calculating the final number of deer. They can also get partial credit for each piece if they make minor calculation errors (the tasks will be graded by hand).
The problem touches on at least three domains from the Common Core State Standards—algebraic thinking, number and operations in base 10, and measurement and data. And unlike the problems students may be used to seeing, this one doesn't lead them through the solving process by breaking the challenge into parts.
Read the full article by Liana Heitin in Education Week magazine: A Closer Look at a Math Performance Task From PARCC