I work in groups of max. 6 learners. Each group collects empty cartons etc. These they use to produce different items to sell on market day ( In south Africa we use the term flea market.We have many of these markets where arts and crafts are sold.) On the day, I use the maths lesson for the market day, I use their scheduled hour for maths. On this day their group will be responsible for selling and marketing their products.The making of the products could be integrated with art lessons, English & drama lessons etc. I intoduce them to the theme by encouraging them to think of things that will sell at a market, not the average every day sort of item. These items are made of cardboard boxes that would normally be thrown away, they cut, paste, paint and decorate the items ( all this will be done in their spare time, I only give them one lesson to plan and organise this. After that I continue teaching my maths lesson I have planned. One week later we have the market day. I use my PC to make money that I then print and give each group a certain amount. They must plan and decide, as a group, how the money is going to be used. They can use the money to buy, sell their goods they also buy and re-sell goods.(For grade 6 pupils this is extremely exciting even though play money is used.) During market day it is very noisy, I use a whistle to control and stop the activity every 5 minutes. When I stop the activity, pupils who do not FREEZE will pay a fine to me thus they are ver4y careful not to waste their money. When i have silence one group will have an opportunity to dramatise a TV advert, this will be to encourage others to buy their product. At the end of the lesson I award a prize to the groups for : The goup making the most money another prize to the group who had the most original products on sale, A prize for the most organised market stall (I use 3 desks gouped together ), a prize for the most convincing and appealing advertisement.The prizes I issue are certificates or gift vouchers to buy something at the school tuck shop. A packet of crisps etc.
This lesson sounds confusing but is extremely exciting for the pupils. They get together at break times ( recess ) to plan and organise this.
This activity encourages lateral thinking, creativity and various skills are involved such as English grammar, writing, drama, working with money, discussion and debating. The children come up with some very original ideas. Some bake cookies, make flower arrangements from flowers they have cut out of paper, others make jewellery out of coloured wire and beads etc.