Reflection: Problem-based Approaches Getting Paid for our Work - Section 2: Doing the Math


The task of setting a price, thinking about change from the original price, and figuring out the total amount earned included several complex tasks. (MP1) Students had to first realize that if they charged more than 25 cents they could not afford to buy their own products. In the real world this may not be the most important aspect of price setting, but to second graders this is the deciding factor. They wanted to get change and see how much money they made overall. The concept of the cost of the materials is one that would take another lesson to really make sense out of. Even students who have had lemonade stands just get the materials from mom or dad. I wanted to introduce the idea of how a factory works, and use the math and build the sun catchers for science so I chose not to stress the idea of paying for the materials out of the profit at this time. Discussing cost of materials and price and profit would be a great extension of this lesson for another math block.

Next students had to think about the concept of getting change back. This is often a difficult concept for students. They have seen their parents get change back (although that happens less and less in a world that uses credit and debit cards all the time), but the concept that the price of the item plus the change should equal the amount paid (their quarter) is hard to visualize. 

The Common Core standards solving comparison word problems (2OA.A.1) and this task asks students to do that. Adults take making change for granted, but it is a comparison problem that requires students to grasp that 2 different things can be equal.

Finally, students had to find a way to figure out how much money the factory made. I could have kept the money separate and for every quarter paid, given the student the 15 cents in change and put the ten cent profit in a different container so that students could count up by dimes to find the total earned, but I didn't think of that at the time, so students had to do the problem on paper, using their own visual representations and model with math(MP4) to solve it. Students drew tally marks to represent the dimes, some drew dimes, others counted by tens on their fingers. 

Students were using what they knew about math today to solve a series of complex problems.

  Understanding the Value of Money
  Problem-based Approaches: Understanding the Value of Money
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Getting Paid for our Work

Unit 6: Everything in Its Place
Lesson 1 of 14

Objective: SWBAT see how money is used to buy and sell items. They will participate in an activity to see how people get money.

Big Idea: Combining lessons across subject matter brings an authentic feeling to the lesson. Today the lesson brings together science, social studies and math.

  Print Lesson
Math, Number Sense and Operations, Money, problem solving, addition, creativity, group work, counting
  45 minutes
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