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Lesson 3 – Running costs

This lesson plan links to the following national curriculum areas:
  • PHSE NC criteria: Knowledge, skills and understanding: 1a, 1c, 1e; Breadth of study: 4g
  • Citizenship: Unit 05, How the economy functions; Unit 09, Consumer rights and responsibilities
  • English: Reading: 1a, 4a, 4c; Breadth of study: 9b, 10
  • Key skills: ICT; Problem-solving; Working with others; Application of number


At the end of the lesson the student will be able to:

  • Identify the main car maintenance activities
  • Calculate basic running costs for a car
  • Understand the concept and impact of car value depreciation

Lesson summary

Owning your first car brings many responsibilities. One of the most important is maintenance. Carrying out simple tasks, such as checking tyre pressure or oil level, is part of the practical driving test. You should be aware of how to perform these tasks so that you avoid breaking down, or know what to do if you do break down.

Costs are an inevitable feature of car ownership: fuel, MOT and insurance costs are just a few. Calculating running costs before buying a car is an important exercise. It encourages students to think ahead before making a purchase, and to take responsibility for their spending decisions.

This lesson concentrates on car maintenance and running costs. By using cost case studies and solving hands-on maintenance problems, students are given the chance to think about car ownership in a very specific context, and they learn to plan ahead and understand their responsibilities.

Follow the link to the lesson documents on the top right.

 Lesson 1 – Media savvy

How media savvy are your pupils?

 Lesson 2 – Money matters

What to consider when buying a first car

 Lesson 3 – Running costs

Work out the cost of running a car


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