This week in Consumer Math we talked a bit about wage theft. This is a real problem among low-wage earners, especially for those who do not keep a record of the number of hours they worked. A few of my students said something like, "Yeah, I worked x hours one week and my check was only y dollars." They knew something was wrong but hadn't said anything to their bosses. On Friday one of my students told the class that she put her boss on alert about wage theft after we talked about it in class. I loved hearing that!
One of the problems I realized my students were having was converting minutes worked to wages earned. For example, if Dan works 5 hour and 45 minutes and makes $10 an hour, how to we figure out how much he makes? We went over this a little on Friday but I soon realized we'd need a visual. I came up with this conversion wheel.
If Dan worked 8 hours and 45 minutes, we'd figure out how much he should make by multiplying his hourly wage $10 by 8.75 to get $87.50.
As I looked around the room, I saw a lot of bewildered faces. OK, it was a Friday afternoon but still, this is something my kids need to know so that they do not get ripped off. So I came up with some examples to hang alongside the conversion wheel:
(If you'd like to download these posters, you can find them for free in the "Freebies" section of the sidebar.)