Holiday STEM Math Activity

By Melissa Taylor


What are you going to eat for your holiday dinner? Do you eat the traditional ham or turkey dinner? Whatever you’re planning, include your children in the process. This holiday STEM activity will help them to practice math skills to find the total cost for the meal and create a menu. Here’s how to get started.

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  1. Gather grocery store advertisements.
    If you don’t have any ads at home, you can always find them online and print them out.
  1. With your child, discuss what you want to eat (your Holiday menu).
    What are you planning to serve? Create a comprehensive list of foods on a piece of notebook paper. List the food on the right side of your paper. Let your kids pick some of the food, too.

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  1. Price each item of food.
    Now, add the cost of each food to your paper using the newspaper ads. Teach your child how to take a price per pound and determine a total cost – this applies to vegetables, fruit, and meat. Tell them how many pounds you plan to buy and how to use multiplication to determine the total cost.If you have time, help them learn how to comparison shop at more than one store. For example, what is the difference in Wal-Mart versus Target? Does it matter what food it is or if one store is consistently cheaper?
  2. Add up the costs.
    Use a calculator to add together all the food prices and get a total cost of the meal. Talk about the price of regular meals versus a Holiday meal.
  1. Create a Restaurant-Type Holiday Menu
    For extra fun and art integration, have your kids make a menu for the holiday dinner. Cut out pictures from the newspaper advertisements and glue them onto card stock or a file folder. Add prices if you want and give your guests pretend money to buy meals from your holiday restaurant.

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Wishing you and your family Happy Holidays!