I just opened my Sunday paper to find "The Great Big
Toys R Us Book" flyer. Last year I did the following activity with 4th and 5th Grade classes and it was very successful.
First, I collected all my neighbors' books and then went to the local Toy R Us store to obtain more books until I had a total of one for every two students in the class. The student work with a partner on this activity, but each student purchased their own individual items.
Each student will have $200 to spend using the Toys Are Us Catalog. They may spend less than $200.00, but they may not spend more than $200. They must purchase a minimum of 4 items. They do not need to worry about calculating tax.
(Though if you did this activity with 6th Grade classes calculating tax would be a good idea.)
The students will receive a “Waitress receipt form”
to list their purchases and the accompanying prices for each item.(I bought them at Walmart for around $3.00. For some reason, using the pre-printed pad form made the activity more engaging for the students) The students must obtain a total of all purchases at the bottom of the receipt form.
I would suggest that you make them add the Waitress receipt form dollar amounts without a calculator. If you need to differentiate for some students let them use the calculator.
On the back of the receipt, students are to calculate their change from the $200.00 that they were told they could spend.
When the students are ready to hand in their completed assignment, they are to check their work with a calculator in front of the teacher. Any errors need to be corrected. The teacher will write the amount of change in RED on the receipt.
As a whole class, make an “amount of change” ranking from the lowest (or closest to spending exactly $200.00) to the greatest amount of change received. (This is another opportunity to compare numbers. If you don’t have time to complete this part of the activity today, save it and as a whole group do this activity the following day.)