Applying maths to solve problems in the real world…

Saucepan Discount

Difficulty: Rating:

GCSE Marks:

GCSE Text: A set of saucepans originally cost £220, but is on sale today for £80.

By what percentage has the original price been reduced in today’s sale?

Suggestions:
This video is a simple example of calculating the discount on a product. Students may solve this either by working out the percentage that was actually paid first, or by finding the difference first – either way is acceptable and either method would attract 1 mark even if the final answer was incorrect. Students normally take between 2 and 3 minutes to solve this, and it acts as a good plenary activity.

Discussions normally follow about whether the answer is correct as it is a considerable discount, but these really were the real costs! It also serves well to highlight GCSE language. Some students are initially unsure what is being asked, and I often ask them ‘Was it a 10% off sale?’ to help them understand what is being asked.

Once an answer is reached, I encourage students to ‘double check’ their answer by performing a regular percentage reduction calculation on the original price.

Extension Ideas: Teachers could extend the learning by considering:

Give other products that were on sale today in different shops. A camera was originally £480 but today is £270, and a watch was originally £85.99 but today is £38.50. Which offered the best percentage reduction and therefore represented the best ‘deal’?