Share the Profit


The purpose of this activity is to engage students in solving a problem involving fractions and proportional reasoning.

Achievement Objectives
NA4-2: Understand addition and subtraction of fractions, decimals, and integers.
NA4-3: Find fractions, decimals, and percentages of amounts expressed as whole numbers, simple fractions, and decimals.
NA4-4: Apply simple linear proportions, including ordering fractions.
Description of Mathematics

The background knowledge and skills that need to be established before and/or during this activity are outlined in the diagram below:

Click to show example questions for each heading


This activity may be carried out with step by step guidance, or by allowing the student to follow their own method of solution. The approach should be chosen in sympathy with students' skills and depth of understanding.


Three men run a business together.

The proportion of the profit they each get at the end of the month is based on the proportion of the funds they have invested in the business.

The April profit is shared out so that Al gets one third, Bob gets one half and Chuck gets one sixth.

In May, Des joins the group, investing half as much as Bob invested.

What share of the profit can Des expect to get?

The arithmetic approach  (show more)

  • The student is able to use a value to divide onto the appropriate proportions in order to solve the problem.

The conceptual approach  (show more)

  • The student is able to divide an unknown value into appropriate proportions in order to solve the problem.

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