MAUMELLE, Ark. -- Maumelle Middle School math teacher, Ms. Lindsey, is teaching her students how to budget money and incorporate linear equations in two variables through a road trip project.
“Students were given an introduction of being invited to appear on a MTV show the ‘Illest Road Trip of All Time’,” said Ms. Lindsey. “The students were told that they could only appear on the show if they submitted an application that showed that they could plan a road trip that showed they know how to manage their money.”
The assignment gave students $10,000 and the students had to choose from three different types of meals, three different types of lodging, and three different types of baggage. They also had to choose a car to rent for their trip that had a limit on the amount of people that could fit in the car. And they also had to figure out the cost of their gas using the total miles of the trip and miles per gallon of the car.
Students had to create two types of equations: a main expense equation and a vehicle expense equation. Using these equations, they had to determine the amount of days they could spend on their trip. They had to at least go for seven days but could not go over 31 days. If they did not spend at least $9,500, they had to go back and make some changes to what they were spending their money on.
“From the project, I learned that if you use real-world situations, you can use an equation to find out something that will be used in the past, present, or future,” said 8th grader Cambria Tedrow. “When I plugged a certain number into the equations we created, I learned the certain cost or gas mileage for something. This helped me in other sections of the project. In all, I think that this would be a good project for other students in the future because it's easy, and they can learn how to calculate how much money they will need for something.”
“This project sparked a lot of interesting questions and conversations,” said Ms. Lindsey “Students were able to use their creativity to go wherever they wanted to go in North America but also see that Algebra is everywhere.”