It’s time to bring the maths lesson outdoors. But don’t worry, it’s merely your local supermarket.
The supermarket is one of the best examples of a place where maths is real. It’s a great place for practising measurement, estimation, and quantity. Since trips to the supermarket usually affect everyone in the family, the following activities include various levels of difficulty within the activity.
Allowing your children to participate in weighing, counting, and figuring price per unit versus price per kilogramme will help improve their ability to estimate and predict amounts with accuracy.
What You’ll Need
A weighing scale, either from the supermarket or your home
What to Do
- Help your child examine the scale in the supermarket or the one you have at home. Explain that kilogrammes are divided into smaller parts called grams and 1,000 grams equal a kilogramme.
- Gather the produce you are purchasing, and estimate the weight of each item before weighing it. If you need 500 grams of grapes, ask your child to place the first bunch of grapes on the weighing scale, and then estimate how many more or fewer grapes are needed to make exactly 500 grams.
- Let your child hold an item in each hand and guess which item weighs more. Then use the scale to check.
- Ask questions to encourage thinking about measurement and estimation. You might want to ask your child: How much do you think 6 apples will weigh? More than 500 grams, less than 500 grams, or equal to 500 grams? How much do the apples really weigh? Do they weigh more or less than you estimated? Will 6 potatoes weigh more or less than the apples? How much do potatoes cost per 100 grams? If they cost 10 cents per 100 grams, what is the total cost?
Let your child experiment with the store scale by weighing different products.
Parent Pointer: There are many opportunities to increase estimation and measurement skills by weighing objects in the produce section of the supermarket.