Comparing Prices Activity

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Updated on Apr 24, 2014

Math can be a little drab when it’s problems on a worksheet. But what about math that you can apply to everyday activities? Help your third grader apply his math skills the next time you plan a meal similar to a favorite family dish from a restaurant. With receipts, a menu, and a little help from you, he can learn the importance of comparing prices and saving money!

What You Need:

  • A restaurant meal that the whole family loves
  • Price per plate (from a menu)
  • A recipe for a similar dish
  • Receipts and prices for the ingredients

What You Do:

  1. Explain to your child that you are trying to figure out which is a better deal—eating dinner in a restaurant or fixing the same meal at home. Show him the online menu or a take-out menu and ask him how much the dinner costs.
  2. Now explain to him that you have a recipe to make the same thing at home. Show him the recipe and the receipts from the grocery store. Tell him that you want to know which is a better buy. Can he add up the cost of the ingredients and help you compare them?
  3. Have him explain to you which costs less. Has he remembered to multiply the number of restaurant meals by the number of people in the family?
  4. How much money would you spend eating dinner out every day in one week? Help him compare this to your weekly grocery expenses.

In addition to a math lesson, turn this into a family and consumer science lesson. Since you already have the ingredients, fix the meal with your son. He will learn not only the savings involved but also the skills that he will need to fix his own meals one day.

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