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MATH  

Duplicate and distribute these activities. Students may work independently or cooperatively.

Compare Career Goals
Use your data-gathering skills and the Internet to find out whether you and your friends have the same career goals as people in other parts of the United States.

• Design a survey form that gives different career goal options. For category options, surf the Web sites in Livelyhood's "Learn about Work: A Starting Point for Online Research" section. You might want to choose general industries which match up with the Department of Labor's research categories so that you can compare, or you might want to list specific jobs.

• Take a poll of people your age. Try to survey at least 25 people.

• Convert your results to percentages. Show them in a pie graph or a bar graph.

Compare your results with those of researchers in other regions. If possible, express comparisons in mathematical terms; for example, the percentage of students in our area wanting to work in aerospace is 23% greater than the percentage of students in Des Moines, Iowa wanting to work in that field.

Slices of Life
Many people do several different kinds of work over the course of their life. You can create graphic devices that quantify the phases of an individual's work life.

• Interview an adult about the various jobs he or she has held.

• Make a job timeline for this person.

• Use the information on the timeline to make a pie graph showing what portion of the individual's working life has been spent at each job.

You might work with classmates to create a display of the graphs on a bulletin board in the vocational education area of your school.

Afterward, think about what the timeline and pie graph for your worklife might look like many years from now.

Productivity and Profitability
Imagine you are a worker in a company that has decided to cut its work week to 30 hours but still pay the employees the same amount they were paid for 40 hours work (30/40 plan). Calculate the effects.

• Choose an hourly wage for yourself. (This is the rate you would have been getting when you were working 40 hours a week.)

• Calculate your new hourly wage.

• Figure out how much your company will make or lose with the 30/40 plan if your productivity per week.

    —stays the same
    —increases by 10%
    —increases by 20%
    —increases by 30%
    —increases by 40%

Now put yourself in the position of a factory manager. Answer this question:

    I would/would not go to a 30/40 plan for my factory because
    ______________________________.

For help on this exercise, or to get behind the numbers and find out more, check out the varied sites dealing with Wages in the United States, on the Livelyhood Web site.