Central Park

3 Act Math, Daily Overview

Act 1:

What percent of Manhattan is Central Park?

There were several other questions that we found more interesting, but we decided to keep it simple to start. The sequel is where it really gets exciting.

Act 2:

What information would be useful to figure this out?

Students will need to know the area of both Central Park and Manhattan. Once again, a Google Maps Engine would be neat for the kids to use instead of simply receiving the information. See the tutorial video here.

For those without the necessary technology, we provided the actual areas. Also, to make the task a little more challenging, the units are different.

Manhattan Area

Park Area

Act 3:


How many people could fit, shoulder-to-shoulder, in the park?

How many hot dog stands could fit in the park? (Give each stand its own 50 foot radius to avoid stand-to-stand feuding)

I’m really excited about these questions because they take the task to a new level. There are many ways in which the students can determine where to place the hot dog stands. Using the Google Maps Engine or simply printing an overview picture of the park would allow for a lot of student creativity. I’m interested to see what the kids come up with.

Official Lesson Page:


  • Common Core
    • 6.RP.A.3.C – Find a percent of a quantity as a rate per 100 (e.g., 30% of a quantity means 30/100 times the quantity); solve problems involving finding the whole, given a part and the percent.
    • HSG.C.A – Understand and apply theorems about circles
  • TEKS
    • 7.4D – Solve problems involving ratios, rates, and percents, including multi-step problems involving percent increase and percent decrease, and financial literacy problems
    • 7.9B – Determine the circumference and area of circles

Daily Overview / Satellite imagery courtesy of Digital Globe / Benjamin Grant

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