## Pages

### Teaching Budgeting in High School Consumer Math

Teaching the ins and outs of budgeting was one of my favorite units to teach in Consumer Math. It started with us calculating net monthly income and ended with us commenting on how much we all spend on food. It was a fun unit to teach because it gave students the tools to analyze their own spending and how it aligned with their future goals.

In our wages and salary unit, we learned that net monthly income is about 70% of gross monthly income. We often used this net income estimation when budgeting.

We started each class with a warm-up that involved budgeting for a make believe client. Here's Martin's monthly spending shining on the front board. Is he overspending in any budget category?

Every student got a warm-up template to complete. When gross monthly income was given without a list of paycheck deductions, like with Martin, students used the 70% estimation to get net monthly income.

This is the budget wheel that students had in their notebooks that shows the percentages of each budget category.

Students then calculated their client's spending in each category and analyzed for overspending. It looks like Martin is overspending on housing and on food.

The budgeting warm-ups are part of the Scaffolded Consumer Math Curriculum.

As a way to sum up learning, students completed a set of budget task cards. I let students use their notebooks for reference, though the cards also include the budgeting percentages.

More budget activities

 Budgeting digital math escape room

This budgeting digital math escape room is an engaging activity for calculating budgets. Each puzzle is answer-validated, so students can't move on to the next puzzle until typing the correct 4-letter code.

 Budgeting digital math escape room

When students type the correct code, they move on to the next puzzle. A black and white paper version is also included if you'd rather students work offline.

 Budget Project

Students pick a career, an apartment, a car and a habit in this mix-and-match budget project. There are 576 possible lifestyle choices, given the 20 cards. Two answer keys are included for the most frugal lifestyle and the most extravagant lifestyle.

Browse all consumer math

Browse consumer math activities