This blog is where we share our homeschooling journey. Our style is eclectic, employing strategies like notebooking, workboxing, and some relaxed unschooling I like to call organic or free-range learning.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Another Math Game: Receipt Wallpaper

Image courtesy of Stock Xchg

I was tossing some old receipts out of my purse the other day, marveling at how fast the little beggars stack up in my tote. I hit on an idea for a math activity that I know isn't quite new, but one I want to try and maybe add a couple angles to.

We'll be saving all our receipts for one month. That's every single one, from the 75-cent candy bar at the mini mart(remember when they were only a quarter?) to our endless loop of tape at the grocery store. All fast food. Every gas purchase. You get the picture.

Each time we bring home a receipt, it gets taped to a wall set aside for that purpose. I'm betting our new wallpaper will spread like wildfire. After the month ends, it'll be time to add up the number of receipts collected, as well as the total spent. (Good long hand or calculator practice!)

From this, several lessons can be taught (not all of which will be just to my child, I'm sure!)...

1. The sheer math value of counting/adding money spent.
2. The tie-in implication of budgeting (we could buy more toys, but this is what we spend).
3. The environmental considerations of our spending habits.
4. Sorting and categorizing of expenses. (What gets bought the most?)
5. How to save strategies (what if we bought less fast food meals next month?)

...and so on. With a little ingenuity, I'm betting all school subjects could be somehow tied in to this activity.

I think this will be an eye-widener for parents as well as kids, and something we can all learn from. I'd love to apply this on a broader scale, such as making this a year-long project if the one-month trial goes well. And just think, come tax time we'd have all our receipts handy!


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