Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Thanksgiving Bargain Shopping

Christine Corvin
Santa Rosa District Schools


Let's talk turkey about Thanksgiving grocery shopping! Students work in groups to compare grocery store prices to shop for Thanksgiving dinner.


Apply mathematical concepts and processes to solve problems.

Cooperate in a variety of group situations.


-Grocery store advertisements (from newspaper or from 3 different local grocery stores); a set of 3 for each group
-A colored highlighter for each student
-Worksheet (see Associated File)
-Overhead transparency of worksheet
-Overhead projector and pens
-Rubric for assessment (see Associated File)


1. Gather sale ads or newspaper inserts from 3 local grocery stores. Collect enough for each group of 3 students to have a set. Ask co-workers to save them from the newspaper or go to the stores to get them.
2. Download Thanksgiving Bargain Shopping worksheet and rubric. (see Associated File)
3. Make copies of the chart worksheet for students.
4. Make copies of the rubric.
5. Make an overhead transparency of the chart worksheet.
6. Determine how to divide students into groups of 3.


NOTE: This lesson is done a week or so before Thanksgiving when stores publish their holiday sale papers.

1. Write the words “Thanksgiving Dinner” on the board in large letters.

2. Ask students to name some foods that come to mind when they see those words. List some of these on the board.

3. Discuss the planning and preparation that must be done before Thanksgiving dinner.

4. Have several students tell where their families do grocery shopping. Ask if they go only to one store or to several.

5. Lead students into a discussion of why some people shop at more than one store.

6. Show students a grocery store sale paper and ask if the grocery shoppers in their families look at these before grocery shopping. Point out a few items in the paper and discuss the prices.

7. Point out some examples of items that demonstrate units of sale (potatoes by the pound, eggs by the dozen, cereal by the box, beans by the can, etc). Elicit more examples from students.

8. Tell students they are going to be bargain shoppers today.

9. Divide students into groups of three.

10. Distribute Thanksgiving Bargain Shopping chart worksheets, one per student.

11. Give each group a set of three different grocery store sale papers. Explain that each student in the group will be responsible for finding the prices of food items from the worksheet in his/her sale paper and sharing those prices with group members.

12. Display the transparency of the worksheet on the overhead.

13. Choose a student to tell you the name of the grocery store on his sale paper. Write that name in the column heading under “STORE 1” on the transparency. Have all students do the same on their worksheets. Call on students with different ads for stores 2 and 3. Write store names in those columns and have students do that as well.

14. Demonstrate how to find prices in the sale papers and record them on the worksheet by doing row one together, using the overhead transparency.

15. Instruct all students to find the cost of turkeys in their papers. Call on a student to tell the unit of sale (pound) and record this in the unit column. Student will record this on their worksheets.

16. Ask a student who has a Store 1 paper to tell the price of turkeys and record it in that column. Do the same for Stores 2 and 3.

17. Have students look at the three prices and highlight the one that is the best buy. Observe to see that all students have completed this row correctly.

18. Instruct students to work with group members to complete row 2 (cranberry sauce). Check worksheets in each group as students finish.

19. Ask groups to complete the worksheet, instructing them to finish one row before moving to the next.

20. Encourage students to look at the highlighted items when they have finished the worksheet to determine if one store has more bargains than the other stores.

21. Collect worksheets when students have finished.


Use the completed student Thanksgiving Bargain Shopping worksheets and the rubric to formatively assess the student’s ability to:
-Apply mathematical concepts and processes to solve problems
-Compare the cost of two or more items to determine the best value
-Work in a group situation


This lesson can be adapted to any holiday or special occasion by determining a menu and creating a shopping list that is appropriate to that occasion.

The lesson is designed for students at the independent level. Students at the supported level can participate in this activity by being grouped with students at the independent level. Instead of all students completing a worksheet, one student can be chosen to record the information for the group.

Attached Files

Included are a worksheet and a rubric.     File Extension: pdf

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