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Jan Gebert is an Illuminations lesson plan reviewer and instructor of professional and secondary education at East Stroudsburg University. So she definitely knows a thing or two about quality lessons. Illuminations asked her for her favorite out of our 600+ lessons.
Success Story

Deeanna Golden, a teacher of 24 years at F.M. Golson Elementary School in Marianna, Florida, is a beloved Illuminations lesson plan writer. So we asked her, "Why do you think it is important to share resources?"

Success Story
In a four‑digit number, the sum of the digits is 10. All the digits are different. What is the largest such four‑digit number?
Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Num & Ops Base Ten
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Generalize place value understanding for multi-digit whole numbers.
4.NBT.A.2, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1

Water Bucket Conundrum This problem has crossed my path a number of times in various guises. Perhaps you have also seen a version of it. You are staying at a rural cabin, and the only method to get water is to draw it from a well. A 4-gallon bucket and a 9-gallon bucket are the only containers for carrying

Problems

Problems to Ponder: Neighborhood Sleuth

Problems

Place a number in each of the following empty boxes so that the sum of the numbers in any 3 consecutive boxes is 2013. What is the number that should go in the box with the question mark?

 607 724 ?
Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Num & Ops Base Ten
Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Use place value understanding and properties of operations to perform multi-digit arithmetic.
3.NBT.A.2, 4.NBT.B.4, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP2

There are 4! = 24 ways to rank four objects. However, a friend told me that if ties are allowed, the number increases to 75.

I attempted to list all the possibilities by first listing the 24 orderings of four objects, then using brackets to group ties involving two players, then group ties involving three players, and finally the single case in which all four objects are tied. But something has gone wrong; my list includes just 69 possibilities, not 75.

What happened? Did I miss something, or was my friend mistaken?

Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Attend to precision.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP6

The rectangle shown consists of eight squares. The length of each side of each square is 1 unit. The length of the shortest path from A to C using the lines shown is 6 units.

How many different six-unit paths are there from A to C?

Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Attend to precision.
Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP2, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP6
The length and width of a rectangle are whole numbers of centimeters. Neither is divisible by 6. The area of the rectangle is 36 square centimeters. What is the perimeter of the rectangle, in centimeters?
Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Measurement & Data
Algebraic Thinking
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Solve problems involving measurement and conversion of measurements from a larger unit to a smaller unit.
Geometric measurement: understand concepts of area and relate area to multiplication and to addition.
Gain familiarity with factors and multiples.
Geometric measurement: recognize perimeter as an attribute of plane figures and distinguish between linear and area measures.
3.MD.D.8, 4.OA.B.4, 3.MD.C.7b, 4.MD.A.3, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1

A calendar year is typically referred to as a four‑digit number, as in 2008, or as a two‑digit number, as in ’08. Sometimes, the two‑digit number divides evenly into the four‑digit number, with no remainder.

How many times did this happen during the twentieth century?

Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
The Number System
Num & Ops Base Ten
Algebraic Thinking
Attend to precision.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Compute fluently with multi-digit numbers and find common factors and multiples.
Perform operations with multi-digit whole numbers and with decimals to hundredths.
Multiply and divide within 100.
3.OA.C.7, 5.NBT.B.6, 6.NS.B.2, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP6

What is the smallest positive number with exactly ten positive integer divisors?

And what is the next one after that?

Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Algebraic Thinking
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Gain familiarity with factors and multiples.
4.OA.B.4, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1

7772 means 777 × 777,
7773 means 777 × 777 × 777,
and so on.

Suppose 7777 is completely multiplied out. What is the units digit of
the resulting product?

Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Expression/Equation
Num & Ops Fractions
Algebraic Thinking
Attend to precision.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Apply and extend previous understandings of arithmetic to algebraic expressions.
Apply and extend previous understandings of multiplication and division to multiply and divide fractions.
Multiply and divide within 100.
3.OA.C.7, 5.NF.B.5a, 6.EE.A.1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP6
Would you rather work seven days at \$20 per day or be paid \$2 the first day and have your salary double every day for a week?
Problems
Grades: 9th to 12th, 6th to 8th, 3rd to 5th
Mathematical Practices
Functions
Num & Ops Base Ten
Algebraic Thinking
Look for and make use of structure.
Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Interpreting Functions
Generalize place value understanding for multi-digit whole numbers.
Solve problems involving the four operations, and identify and explain patterns in arithmetic.
3.OA.D.9, 4.NBT.A.2, HSF-IF.A.3, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP1, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP2, CCSS.Math.Practice.MP7
Can you really trisect an angle with a carpenter's square?
Problems
Grades: High School, 9th to 12th
Geometry
Congruence
HSG-CO.B, HSG-CO.C, HSG-CO.D

How much should the manager of a theater raise his prices in order to maximize his profit?

Problems
Grades: High School, 9th to 12th
Functions
Building Functions
Interpreting Functions
HSF-IF.B.4, HSF-IF.B.5, HSF-IF.C.7, HSF-BF.A.1
Find two transformations that will move one triangle onto the other.
Problems
Grades: High School, 9th to 12th
Geometry
Congruence
HSG-CO.A.5

Figure out how many wings are in the Biggest Bucket O' Wings.

Problems
The Number System
Compute fluently with multi-digit numbers and find common factors and multiples.
6.NS.B
A Ninja apprentice needs your help to use the density of titanium to calculate the angle of the spike on his throwing star!
Problems
Grades: High School, 9th to 12th
Geometry
Circles
Similarity, Right Triangles, and Trigonometry
HSG-SRT.D, HSG-C.B
Find the dimensions of a window designed to let in the maximum amount of sunshine.
Problems