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Understanding taxes (QC)

Subject Area: Mathematics

Brief overview

This situation consists of learning how to calculate taxes and their usefulness in Québec.

Subject area(s)

· Competency 2: Using mathematical reasoning
Establish links between concepts and processes, givedemonstrations, and organize the results of a procedure

Explanation of the teaching goal

– Calculation of taxes
– Reasons justifying the payment of taxes

Expected outcomes

Ensure that the students understand what taxes are, their usefulness, and the way they are calculated.


Role-playing can be carried out by the students, who should perform the activity in the appendix to learn about GST and QST. This activity will allow them to become familiar with the appropriate terms.


The teacher corrects the role-playing activity with the students. Afterwards, the teacher explains the different parts of a bill (in the appendix) and how taxes are calculated. Lastly, the students are encouraged to calculate taxes on their own using the bill activity in the appendix. It is also possible to encourage the students to bring their own bills, to see how taxes are applied to their purchases.


The teacher discusses with the students different questions, such as:
– What do you think about paying taxes?
– Do you think it is necessary to pay taxes?
– What purpose do taxes serve?
– What would happen if we didn’t pay taxes?
– Are taxes mandatory?
– What must we pay taxes on?


This situation requires access to a projector or interactive digital smartboard

Required material

– Appendix: Role-playing activity
– Appendix: Corrected role-playing activity
– Appendix: Calculating taxes
– Appendix: Activity on bills
– Appendix: Corrected activity on bills
– Pencils
– Calculator (teacher’s choice)
– Projector or interactive digital smartboard

Evaluation tracks

Mathematics: evaluation of the ability to correctly use appropriate concepts and processes, and to adequately structure each step of the procedure (C. 2)

*The teacher is free to adapt each section based on the group and as the situation unfolds.