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How much do a schoolteacher and LeBron James make in a year? In this lesson students explore not only how much people earn each year, but also each day, hour and minute. They also figure out how long a teacher would have to work to earn what LeBron makes in a year, and how long each of them would have to work to buy a new car.

Finally, students calculate how much income tax each person has to pay every year, and discuss whether there is a difference between how much someone pays in taxes and how much they’re worth.

Students will

  • Convert annual salaries into other unit rates (e.g. dollars per day, per hour, or per minute)
  • Use rates to determine how long it would take a teacher and LeBron to buy a new car, and how long it would take a teacher to earn what LeBron makes in a year
  • Determine how much each person pays each year in income tax, and discuss whether or not this seems fair

Before you begin

Students should have experience performing arithmetic with multi-digit and decimal numbers. They should also know how many days are in a year, hours in a day, minutes in an hour, etc.

Common Core Standards

Content Standards
Mathematical Practices


Schoolteachers, LeBron James