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IPod Touch--Middle School Math and Using Percent Problems

Updated on July 3, 2012
Janine Huldie profile image

Janine is a published author in Only Trollops Shave Above the Knees, appears on The Huffington Post and at Confessions of A Mommyaholic.

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Apple's IPod Touch

In Middle School Math, another topic that needs to be learned is percent problems. Most pre-teens nowadays have heard of the company Apple for many products that they make. One of the products most have or want is the IPod Touch. My classroom came equipped with a SmartBoard and Wifi internet. So I would first put up the Apple Website for the iPod Touch: http://www.apple.com/ipodtouch on the SmartBoard. Then, we would begin to talk about all the features and look at the pricing as well.


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Let's look a bit further into some of the features and they are as follows according to apple.com: FaceTime, HD Video Recording, Retina Display, Airplay, Music+ITunes, Games+Apps and ICloud. FaceTime is utilized with the built-in camera and is used for video calls to keep in touch even when you are miles apart. HD Video recording is utilized with the second camera on the back and allows you to shoot 720p video footage even in low-light settings. Retina Display is simply major eye candy that makes text and graphics incredibly sharp and makes you never want to take your eyes off this iPod. Airplay allows you to view or stream all your music, photos and video wirelessly on your HDTV and/or speakers. Music+ITunes allows you up to 64GB or storage to play all your music on. Game+Apps, well simply put there are over 500,000 apps available and over 100,000 of them are games/entertainment making the IPod the largest portable gaming device. ICloud allows you to store all your stuff, including music, apps, games, latest photos and so much more allowing them to be accessed on your other devices, such as your Mac/PC, IPad or iPhone. Simply put iCloud always allows you to download something on your IPod and have it downloaded onto your other devices wirelessly instantaneously.


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Now, let's look at pricing and this depends on how much storage you would like. The 8GB black/white is $199.00, the 32GB black/white is $299.00 and the 64GB black/white is $399.00.

So, as a class we will vote on which IPod Touch, we are going to purchase for the classroom. The vote here turns out that we feel we would like the 32GB $299.99 Black IPod Touch (for the sake of this article). Now I explain to the class that as an educator, I get a 10% discount for purchasing it and would like to know how much we will be paying after the discount.


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Calculating a 10% Educator's Discount: Percent Problem #1

As a class, we have to figure out what 10% of $299.00 is. But how do we do this? We have to set up an is/of percent problem. To do this, here is the equation we set up: 10/100 = x/299. We will cross multiply to get 100x = 299(10), which is 100x = 2990. Next we have to get x by itself and will do the opposite of multiplication, so we divide 2990 by 100, which is $29.90. So 10% of $299.00 is $29.90. Therefore, the sales price is $299.00-29.90 = $269.10.


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Calculating NY State Sales Tax: Percent Problem #2

However, when you go shopping in NY State, we get charged sales tax, so will we be paying only $269.10? The answer is no of course!! How do we find sales tax? We must use another percent problem. The sales tax in NY is 8.625% for NY State + Nassau County tax. So here is the percent problem to be set up: 8.625/100 = x/269.10. Next we cross multiply to get 100x = 8.625(269.10), which is 100x = 2320.9875. Now again do the opposite of multiplication to solve for x and divide 2320.9875 by 100 to get 23.209875 and now we round because this is money. How do we round here? Well 23.209 should round to $23.21, because the 9 after the 0 tells us to round up. The sales tax is therefore $23.21.

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How Much Does The IPod Touch Really Cost?

How much will we pay for the 32GB IPod Touch for our classroom? Well, let's review. We were charged how much for just the iPod with the 10% off discount? We were being charged $269.10. And how much was the sales tax? It was $23.21. Now, the question is how do we find the final price? Do we add or subtract the sales tax to the cost of the iPod? The students should realize that sales tax makes us pay more, so we must add the sales tax to the cost of the iPod. So, then $269.10 (the cost of the iPod) + $23.21 (the sales tax) = $292.31.

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Summing it Up

Final question. With sales tax, did we pay more or less than the original price before the 10% discount? The answer here for our students is we paid less by ($299.00-292.31) $6.69. So, the 10% discount more or less paid for the sales tax, but still saved us.

I love this lesson, because it is another hands-on lesson using an item that most middle school students are not only aware of, but if not own, would love to own. Now, if they do purchase one for themselves in the future they have a better idea and concept of money and how much they may need to spend before going to the Apple Store to purchase this. So not only are they learning about percent problems (which is of course a required math topic for middle school math), but they are coming away with a valuable lesson about the value of a dollar (which is a priceless lesson for young adults) and most educators and parents as well would agree this is a very good lesson indeed.

Buy Books on Amazon.com About Teaching Math Hands-On:

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    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Keith, thank you so very much and totally agree with you about being able to use technology as an innovative way to teach some of the most important concepts that kids really do need to learn today.

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Thank you ignugent17 for reading this one and commenting too. I couldn't agree more about the students becoming familiar with this innovative product while learning a valuable math concept too.

    • profile image

      KDuBarry03 

      6 years ago

      Technology is becoming one of the greatest teaching innovations ever since the invention of the pencil :) Great job and very informative, Janine!

    • profile image

      ignugent17 

      6 years ago

      This is what the students of today need. These gadgets should be introduce properly and teaching them how to use it is the best way. Thanks for sharing Janine vey informative for the new generation.

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Oh thank you Michelle. Will definitely keep them coming, because I had some many different hands-on activities that I created and now that I am home I am trying to hone in on these activities and perfect them. I figure if I can do that now that when I do go back to work hopefully as a full-time teacher, I will have my lessons all in check and ready to go :) Thanks for your lovely comment and yet again continued support!!

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 

      6 years ago from Singapore

      Another great teaching innovation, Janine. This is a swell idea, and really interactive!! Keep them coming!

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Thanks Linda, totally appreciate your take on this and passing on your valuable first hand information on the IPod, IPhone and IPad. I can totally see a young kid passing on the IPod for the IPad for the bigger is better mentality. Again, totally appreciate your comment and all your support here too.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 

      6 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Very informative information about the iPod Touch and how it could help kids learn and adults also. I had an iPod Touch and it was my BFF. We never were rarely apart until one day in December 2011. It was on that particular day that I purchased an iPhone. My iPod Touch was passed on to my granddaughter. She was thrilled until one day in March 2012. It was on that day that her paternal granny gave her an iPad. The iPod Touch was then passed on to my husband. He hasn't touched it, but he's happy to have it. Oh the poor iPod Touch. I hope my comment serves it's purpose your readers will know that the iPod Touch is very useful and your hub proves it! Way to go!

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Happy 4th to you too Josh!!!

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      You are welcome my new hub friend! Have a happy 4th! :)

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Teaches12345, so glad to be able to help and give you some valuable information for your grandkids. Many young kids who have these just love them. They are so versatile and can do a ton of different things. We don't have the IPod, because we have the IPad and IPhones here, but from everything I have read and seen the IPod is just a great little machine and can do a ton! Thank you to for you comments and continued support.

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Josh, I too am totally a follow loyal of you too. So yet again the feeling is quite mutual. Thank you!!!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      6 years ago

      My grandkids want these for Christmas. Glad you posted the price and details on this new ipod touch. It seems like it has some worth to it and very useful in educational classrooms. Will have to weigh the options, but so appreciate your suggestions.

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      You are welcome, I am going to be a loyal follower for now on, so you had better get used to it! :)

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Again Josh can't thank you enough and you are quite welcome too :)

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      You are very welcome! Vice Versa! :)

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Thank you again Josh for all your continued support. Totally appreciate it! Janine :)

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      This was very informative, thanks Julie, I love your creative ideas! So many people use the ipad or ipod these days for everything, it is so useful.

      Great job, keep up the great work Julie! :)

      Voted up and more!

    • Janine Huldie profile imageAUTHOR

      Janine Huldie 

      6 years ago from New York, New York

      Ttoombs08, thank you for your comment and support. Your use for your IPod Touch proves what a valuable piece of technology the IPod Touch is. I have an IPad and IPhone and both my little girls love using both and I am so amazed at how well they do know how to use both.

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 

      6 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      Very useful information, and will come in very handy for middle schoolers struggling with math. We use our ipad touch for our non-verbal autistic son to work on his letters and numbers. It has been a most valuable tool! VUM!

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