First-Class Postage

Civil Rights leader and Nobel Prize winner Martin Luther King, Jr. was born January 15, 1929.  On January 13, 1979 a 15-cent stamp was issued by the United States Postal Service as part of the Black Heritage Series of commemorative stamps. In 1979 it cost 15 cents to mail a first-class letter weighing up to 1 ounce, and the current cost to mail a first-class letter weighing no more than 1 ounce is 49 cents.  Suppose $24,965,250 worth of the Black Heritage King stamps have been issued by the USPS.


Baking Fruit Cake

Allie plans to make a fruit cake for her family plus four more to give away to friends. Shown here is a list of the ingredients required to make a fruit cake according to Allie’s recipe. How many ounces of mixed fruit are needed for Allie to make five fruit cakes, according to her recipe?

fruit cake ingredients.eps

'Tis the Season

Each year Desmond and his family take part in the cultural celebration of Kwanzaa. The observance centers around the seven principles of Kwanzaa: Umoja, Kujichagulia, Ujima, Ujamaa, Nia, Kuumba and Imani. Suppose Desmond writes each of the five letters of the seventh principle, Imani (Swahili for Faith) on its own index card. If Desmond places the five cards in a bag and randomly chooses three cards, what is the probability that he chooses the three letters of the fifth principle, Nia (Swahili for Purpose)? Express your answer as a common fraction.

Holiday Shopping

Marjorie went shopping on Black Friday and received successive discounts of 25%, 40% and 20% off the original price. If Marjorie wanted to purchase the same items this week, what single percent discount would she have to receive off the original prices to get the items for the same price that they were on Black Friday after the three successive discounts?


Mrs. Hillestad has planned a dinner for 15 people this Thanksgiving. She bought 22.5 lbs of turkey, plus potatoes, cranberry salad, rolls and all of the traditional holiday food. Unfortunately, her daughter forgot to tell her that she was bringing three of her friends.  If Mrs. Hillestad wants to feed each person the same amount of turkey that she had originally planned, how much additional turkey must she purchase to accommodate these additional guests? Express your answer as a decimal to the nearest tenth.

Autumn Leaves

The Wilsons traveled to Shenandoah National Park to view the fall foliage at its peak. The driving time from their home to the park was 2 hours. For the first third of the time they spent driving to the park, the Wilsons were in traffic and averaged 42 mi/h. During the second third of the two hours, they traveled at an average speed of 66 mi/h. For the final third of their trip, the Wilsons traveled on local mountain roads and drove an average of 30 mi/h. What is the total distance the Wilsons traveled to get to the park from their home?

Apples, Apples and More Apples!

The Farmers Market sells apples by the bushel, and each bushel of apples weighs 42 pounds. A bushel of large apples contains 84 apples. If a bushel of small apples contains twice as many apples as a bushel of large apples, how many small apples are in 1 pound of apples?  

School Bus Math

At the first four stops, the number of students that board Mr. Tuttle’s school bus is 4, 6, 12 and 2 students, respectively, and no students exit the bus. After these four stops, the number of students on Mr. Tuttle’s school bus is 50% of its full capacity. How many students does Mr. Tuttle’s bus hold at full capacity?

At the first four stops, a total of 4 + 6 + 12 + 2 = 24 students board the bus. Since this represents 50% of its full capacity, the bus must hold 2 × 24 = 48 students at full capacity.

Math in the Middle

At Tri-City Middle School, half of the 472 enrolled students are taking algebra. One-fifth of the students not taking algebra are taking geometry, and each of the remaining students is taking pre-algebra. How many students enrolled at Tri-City Middle School are taking pre-algebra? Express your answer to the nearest whole number.

Back to School Shopping

Bethany is going back to school shopping. She needs to buy notebooks and notices that two stores are running back to school sales. Store A sells notebooks for 48 cents each and is having a 25% off sale. Store B sells notebooks for 40 cents each and is having a 20% off sale. If she wants to get the best deal, which store should she go to, and how much cheaper are the notebooks at this store?