The 21st Street Sluggers have a problem: Their t-shirts are all worn and dirty. And that won't do at all for playing against the 7th Avenue Spitfires. How can they raise some money fast? A car wash! First, the Sluggers pool their money to buy supplies. Then they set up an assembly line. CJ keeps track of the money. That's easy when the man in the convertible gives him 2 dollar bills, 4 quarters, 4 dimes and 2 nickels: $3.50 is the exact amount. But then Will's Mom gives him a $5 bill. Can he figure out the correct change? Counting change is an important skill needed for everyday life. Illustrated by Barney Saltzberg.
As you read the story, help the child or students understand what is happening on the clipboard. Cover up the totals and ask questions such as, "How much was spent on supplies?" or "How much did the children have after they washed Will's mother's car?"
Using catalog or newspaper inserts, and have your child or students pretend to go shopping. Give each child 10 dollars in either real bills and coins, or in play money. Let them select items to "buy." After "buying" each item, have them set aside the money spent and count up how much remains.
When you go out to eat, have your child make a selection from the menu and then calculate how much it will cost. Name an amount higher than the meal's total and ask what the change should be.
One of life's little skills-making change-gets an airing in yet another elementary math story from the indefatigable Murphy. The Sluggers are desperately in need of new T-shirts for their upcoming championship game. They decide upon the time-honored car-wash route; the crux of this lesson in adding and subtracting is in making correct change-which, of course, brings the decimal into play as well. They charge $3.50 for each washing, then contend with the many variations of change-making: "The driver gave CJ a ten-dollar bill. CJ counted. 'Hmm, 3 dollars and 50 cents plus 2 quarters makes 4 dollars, plus 1 dollar makes 5 dollars, plus 5 dollars makes 10 dollars.' He gave her back 6 dollars and 2 quarters." On the afternoon goes in an air of jollity-Saltzberg keeps the mood light with his simple, gingery artwork-with CJ toting the lucre on his clipboard. As Murphy's notes at the end suggest, lots of math/money games can be spun off from this story and the basic ability to make correct change (one that seems to have escaped many store clerks) can start on the road to becoming second nature.Used with permission from Kirkus Reviews. Copyright ¬© Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
A great combination of a lesson learned while having fun. The 21st Street Sluggers decide to hold a car wash to raise money for new T-shirts for the play-offs. CJ becomes the self-appointed bookkeeper. Collecting $3.50 from each customer and making change while the rest of the team does the actual washing. Change is made in numerous ways and profits are tallied both in totals and by types of coins. In the end, the money is raised and the kids are wet. Colorful illustrations both enhance the story line and elucidate the math lesson with clear tabulations for the money counting and change. Follow-up activities and a reading list are included.
—Nancy A. Gifford, Schenectady County Public Library, NY
Used with permission from School Library Journal. Copyright Cahners Business Information, Inc.
The Sluggers baseball team has a car wash to earn money for new T-shirts. While most of his teammates scrub, rinse and polish the cars, CJ serves as the accountant, sips lemonade, and makes change for the customers. At the end of the day, the workers turn the hose on the one member of the carwash team who never got his hands wet. The closing pages, "For Adults and Kids," offer suggestions of activities that support the math concepts, ways to help children fell more comfortable figuring dollars and cents, and a couple of picture books to reinforce the ideas. As CJ keeps track of money in the story, readers can follow along by watching the sums on his clipboard. Some may even learn to make change, a simple activity that seems to confuse even cashiers these days. Salzberg's colorful illustrations reflect the jovial tone of the text in the appealing addition to the MathStart Series.
—Carolyn Phelan, 2/1/03
Used with permission from Booklist. Copyright ¬© 2003 American Library Association. All rights reserved.
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