May Math

From the NIE guide, A Plan for All Seasons” distributed by the NIE Institute.

The month of May can be a busy one for anyone who is buying gifts for Mother’s Day or school graduations. May is often the month when people also start looking for Father’s Day gifts or gifts for June weddings.

The newspaper is an important resource for many who have several gifts to purchase and very few dollars to spend.  If a reader looks through the retail (display) and the classified ads, a good bargain may be waiting for just the right customer.

Here are some activities you can use with the newspaper on calculating savings on items in ads.

1.  Create a list of some the gifts that you or others in your family plan to buy in the month of May. 

2.  Use your newspaper to find an advertisement for something that would be appropriate for each person on your gift list.  Find the gifts that are on sale at a certain percentage off the regular price.  The regular price must also be included in the ad.  Make a chart using the following headings:

Person              Gift             Regular Price     Percentage Off         Reduced Price

Total cost (Regular Price)                           Total cost (Reduced Price)

Total Amount Saved with Sales Price

3. When you complete your work, calculate the total amount you would spend at the regular price and at the sale price.  You may want to add in any local or state taxes.