Sep 05, 2021

Math Monday: Application on Graphing Wages

In this Math Monday, we’ll introduce you to one part of the Financial Algebra curriculum - Application Problems - and walk through an example activity about graphing wages. 


What are Application Problems?

Application problems are a differentiated set of math activities that are grounded in personal finance content. They’re found in any math lesson from the new Financial Algebra Course.


How can I use Application Problems?

One of the biggest advantages of Application Problems is their flexibility. Application Problems are a great option if you want to…

  • Teach Financial Algebra!
  • Bring more math into your personal finance course.
  • Find ready-to-use math activities that are engaging, accessible, and relevant. 
  • Provide meaningful extension activities for students who are finished their work early.


I’m Sold! Let’s Dive Into an Example!

We’re going to explore Application: Graphing Wages, which is part of Lesson 2.5: Graphing Linear Equations. The activity is designed so students choose one of the following levels:


Level 1: Comparing Salary Offers

Students write linear equations for three different salary packages, graph those equations, and compare who got the best deal.

Level 2: Minimum Wage

Students research the minimum wage and average rent in their state. Then, they model their earnings using an interactive Desmos graph and answer a series of reflection questions.

Level 3: Living Wages for Three Families

Students are given three family descriptions. Then, they write equations modeling their earnings, graph them, and contextualize them based on living wage data for their county.

For Your Learning

If you’re interested in this activity, you might also enjoy these PD opportunities!


Teachers, welcome to NGPF, the one-stop shop (except everything's free) for financial education! Create your free Teacher Account to:

  • Access Answer Keys & Application Problems for our entire free curriculum
  • Level Up with free Teacher PD on your schedule
  • Join a fast-growing community of 53,000+ teachers using NGPF

About the Author

Kathryn Dawson

Kathryn (she/her) is excited to join the NGPF team after 9 years of experience in education as a mentor, tutor, and special education teacher. She is a graduate of Cornell University with a degree in policy analysis and management and has a master's degree in education from Brooklyn College. Kathryn is looking forward to bringing her passion for accessibility and educational justice into curriculum design at NGPF. During her free time, Kathryn loves embarking on cooking projects, walking around her Seattle neighborhood with her partner and dog, or lounging in a hammock with a book.

Mail Icon

Subscribe to the blog

Join the more than 11,000 teachers who get the NGPF daily blog delivered to their inbox: