Third Grade Math Story Problem Project BUNDLE | Math Mysteries | Digital

Grade Levels
2nd - 3rd
Formats Included
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132 pages
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3rd Grade Math Story Problems! Third Grade Math and Third Grade Reading! Project-Based Learning engaging math story problem project! Digital version included compatible with Google Slides and Google Classroom!

Save 20% by purchasing these resources in a bundle!

The MATH MYSTERY BUNDLE includes three math mystery-story problem projects and is an awesome way to keep your students engaged in math problem-solving! Students will be intrinsically motivated to solve each mystery and along the way they will be engaged in solving math problems! Each project is differentiated with two different levels includes to support students at different levels of problem-solving. It also includes a printable version and a digital version to support distance learning!

Each mystery is self-checking, so students will have feedback right away at the end of the project to see if they are correct because if they are incorrect their answer won’t be one of the suspect choices.

Each project includes 11 pages per level of engaging math story problems! Embedded in the story problems are reading passages at an approximate 410-800 Lexile level so they are great for third grade readers! Also, if the text level is above a child's independent level, this is a great activity to do as a read-aloud or with the support of a parent/teacher!

Look for the level key on the bottom right side of each page to ensure that students are working on the correct level. Both levels of this project are aligned to standards 3.OA.A.3, 3.OA.D.8, 3.NBT.A.1, 3.NBT.A.2, 3.NBT.A.3, 3.MD.A.1, 3.MD.B.3 and 3.MD.D.8 The project is also aligned to ELA standards CCSS.ELA-LITERATURE-3.3 and ELA-LITERATURE.3.10. The levels include the following types of problems:

  • Level 1: multiplication within 100 with mostly result unknown. Basic facts within 100. Elapsed time problems using multiples of 5 and 10 minutes. A few two-step problems included. One problem with multiplying by multiples of ten (using friendly numbers). Rounding to nearest hundred and addition within 1,000. Area/perimeter problem included.
  • Level 2: multiplication and division within 144, with mixed problem structure with start unknown, change unknown and result unknown. Missing factor multiplication included. Elapsed time problems using multiples of one minute. Two-step and multi-step story problems. Includes multiplying by multiples of ten. Rounding and addition, subtraction within 1,000. Area/perimeter problem included.

How does it work?

  • Students are presented with a mystery situation, and the possible suspects for who committed the crime.
  • Students read the alibi statements for each character and solve the related math problem(s) on each page.
  • Students use the additional details, clues, detective conversations and information to determine who is guilty of the crime.
  • Students determine who they think is guilty. Then they solve the final problem to see if they are correct. In order for this to work, they must solve every problem correctly. If they find that the final problem is unsolvable, or their answer is not a possible option, then they need to go back and check their work!

*The Footprint Fiasco: The town of West Grove is in a panic because they woke up and saw muddy footprints all over town! They were in front yards and back yards and even garages! There was a big muddy hole in the middle of the town park too! Everyone is worried that someone is trying to cause trouble in the neighborhood but who could it be??

*Swimming Pool Suspect: Everyone was lined up for a day of fun in the sun at the Star Valley Swimming Pool! But when the doors opened, the pool was EMPTY! Somebody drained all the water out of the pool so no one could go swimming! Who would do such a thing! Solve the mystery to find out!

*The Missing Cookie Caper: Someone ate all of the cookies that Mrs. Woodworth baked for the bake sale that afternoon! Who could have committed such a crime? Play the role of detective to figure out which suspect is guilty of eating all the cookies!

"Where were you at the time of the crime?

It couldn’t be you, so tell us why!

We hope you have a good alibi! "

Each project opens as a ZIP file which includes:

  • PDF versions of each level of the project
  • Power Point versions of each level of the project (with easy-to-use "enter text here" boxes for easy online submission). Compatible with Google Drive/Google Classroom
  • Directions for Digital Use
  • Answer keys for every page!


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About the Author

Melanie Doppler--Math Coach Connection taught in a 3rd and 4th grade multi-age classroom in a Title 1 public school in Wisconsin for 3 years, 5th grade math and science for 2 years in a public school in Tennessee, and spent 1 1/2 years as a math coach. She has her BS in Elementary Education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is committed to creating fun and creative products that are differentiated and aligned to the math content standards!


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TERMS OF USE - © Melanie Doppler-Math Coach Connection

Purchase of this digital download is for use in one classroom only. This item is also bound by copyright laws. Redistributing, editing, selling, or posting this item (or any part) on the internet are all strictly prohibited without first gaining permission from the author. Violations are subject to the penalties of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Please email me with any questions:

Total Pages
132 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.
By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poetry, at the high end of the grades 2–3 text complexity band independently and proficiently.
Use multiplication and division within 100 to solve word problems in situations involving equal groups, arrays, and measurement quantities, e.g., by using drawings and equations with a symbol for the unknown number to represent the problem.
Understand division as an unknown-factor problem. For example, find 32 ÷ 8 by finding the number that makes 32 when multiplied by 8.
Fluently multiply and divide within 100, using strategies such as the relationship between multiplication and division (e.g., knowing that 8 × 5 = 40, one knows 40 ÷ 5 = 8) or properties of operations. By the end of Grade 3, know from memory all products of two one-digit numbers.


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