Today one of my classes explored discounts and percentages. This particular class reviewed how to convert fractions and decimals yesterday. Today’s step was to introduce students to the idea of taking a percentage off of a set number.
So I dug through some of my resource from the past and came across a sheet asking students to go on a shopping spree. Yes, that caught my attention. A shopping spree not only sounds fun but could be a great way to connect discounts and percentages. From there I edited the document and decided that the students will be given a specific amount of money to spend and a site to visit to find the items. Amazon.com wasn’t blocked by my school district so I went with that store. Students were also required to use coupons (10%, 20%, 25% …) to purchase the items. The winner of the contest will be the student that has a sum closest to $500.
Students could buy whatever items they wanted. I’m sure this could be repurposed and have the students buy items for a specific reason. After I explained the directions each student was given an iPad or computer and asked to visit Amazon.com and find five items.
Students initially started looking at whatever caught their interests.
Some students looked at shoes while others were finding flying drones. Yes … I said drones. Thankfully all the searches came up without being blocked by the firewall. Students then found the original price and calculated the discount. Their sale price was documented and students went to the next item.
I found that students started to have a challenging time with the last couple of items. They had to carefully consider the coupon before writing down their options. You could tell that they were trying to account for the discount. Understanding the magnitude of the discount started to take priority in the students’ minds.
Not all the students finished, but they will tomorrow. I’m looking forward to comparing the total dollar amounts tomorrow and see who’s closest to $500. Overall, this activity helped students see discounts from a different perspective. This may be an activity that I’d like to edit and use with my other classes.
The idea in this post was adapted from this product. Feel free to download and use for your own classroom.