For about 3 years between high school and college I worked as a cashier at a grocery store. If I had a dollar for every time someone came through my line and spent way more than they thought they were going to...(Wait, scratch that, I technically did make a dollar every time this happened) Anyway, from that experience I realized that many adults have trouble estimating the amount of money they spend when going shopping.
I decided my students could use some help with the matter. So, I went to the grocery store to buy some things for a cookout and video taped parts of the experience. It was really busy there, so the video didn't come out that great as I was trying to avoid getting anyone on camera. (Converting for youtube didn't do the video any favors either) This is the finished product:
Granted adding and estimating isn't complex math, but students have no trouble in seeing the activity's use in everyday life.
I had some extra time at the end of class on Friday in two of my classes, so I told them we would have a competition. Of course, the winner would receive candy. I didn't tell them what the contest was (though it became pretty obvious), I just told them to pay close attention and to follow these rules:
- No talking
- No writing anything down during the video
Anyone have any ideas on how to extend this to add some higher level math and make a full lesson out of it?