Everyday Maths Lessons from my Neighbour’s Lamborghini

MATHS INSIDERS blog (11)

My neighbour has a Lamborghini.

I’m not a huge car fan or anything, but my neighbour’s car is definitely something to be admired.

It’s glossy white

with a spotless black interior (not a biscuit crumb to be seen!)

and the gleaming silver engine sits silently behind smudge free glass until my neighbour starts the car and our house shakes.

Everyday maths lesson 1 – Currency conversion

So the kids wondered how much it cost.

My daughter guessed 1 million riyals (if you’ve read my About page you’ll know we’re expats in the Middle East) so we asked good old Google who gave us the price in dollars. She wasn’t far off it was  $248,000 (930,000 riyals)!

If your  neighbour doesn’t have a Lamborghini, you can try guessing how much a Big Mac meal or a cinema ticket costs in different countries.

Everyday maths lesson 2 – Speed conversion

We then wondered what the top speed of the car was.

I was sure that it wasn’t more than 150 miles per hour, but google confirmed that the beautiful, shiny engine was capable of a top speed of 337 km/h (209 mph).

If irresponsible driving speeds are not your thing, then compare the top speeds of different animals or spacecraft. The Guinness Book of World Records has some cool statistics related to speed.

Everyday maths lesson 3 – Financial Budgeting

Finally we wondered how much we’d have had to save each day to buy one if we started saving 20 years ago

The answer was around $34 a day or $1000 a month. This is without taking into account interest rates and inflation.

Makes me feel a bit better that we actually spent our money on food, clothes, books and children.

Financial budgeting is an everyday maths skill worth working on, not only to work out whether or not that Lamborghini is affordable, but to make sure your children are able to make wise financial decisions when they grow up.

Here are 4 tips to help you and your child enjoy everyday maths:

  • Make the maths as easy or as difficult as you want, round off numbers, grab a calculator, simplify the problem.
  • Relate it to something that your child is actually interested in (For more ideas see the post Keeping it Real! Mental Maths Questions Your Teen Will Actually Want to Answer)
  • Don’t always focus on getting the numbers right – the art of working through a problem is still maths (check out Maths Problem Solving Tip)
  • Make everyday maths as important as reading to your child daily. Bon at MathFour has launched a cool campaign Count 10 Read 10 to encourage parents to integrate 10 minutes of maths into their child’s bedtime routine.

Do you think daily maths is as important as daily reading? What everyday maths have you done with your child? Tell me in the comments below!

Caroline Mukisa

About The Author: Caroline Mukisa is the founder of Maths Insider. A Cambridge University educated math teacher, she’s been involved in math education for over 20 years as a teacher, tutor, Kumon instructor, Thinkster Math instructor and math ed blogger. She is the author of the insanely helpful ebook “The Ultimate Kumon Review” and insanely useful website “31 Days to Faster Times Tables” You can follow her math tips on Facebook and follow her on Twitter @mathsinsider


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2 thoughts on “Everyday Maths Lessons from my Neighbour’s Lamborghini

  1. wow ur neighbor has a lamborgini!!!!! u always go for the totally rich localities alright lol….good becoz that helps maths..right so its justifies…we learnt concept of sink and float in wading pool and also connected it to noah |(as) ark floating away…..i might jus go nw and teach few of ur tips nw!