A blog about teaching and learning in a maths classroom.

The Biggest Loser 2012

Monday, 20 February 2012 | 5 Comments

The Biggest Loser 2012 Worksheet

Each year I use the TV Show, The Biggest Loser, as an application of percentages – here is a worksheet for 2012 setting out the contestant data that your students can use to perform some calculations.

I’m completing this activity earlier than normal this year, so the data is from earlier in the competition.

Also look at the 2011 version for a suggestion to do this as a computer task.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License (?).

Posted in • Lesson IdeaPercentagesPrintableWorksheet | Short URL:


Nordin Zuber on  20 February 12  at  05:03 PM #
Wow - great idea - I'll be using in class tomorrow morning! Thanks so much for this ready to use resource. And I love the 'is the game fair' question embedded in the idea 😊


Simon Job on  20 February 12  at  08:21 PM #
The "is it fair" question worked better in 2011 when I had the contestants goal weight. They are not listed on The Biggest Loser site (yet?)
Dan Pearcy on  21 February 12  at  01:39 AM #
Great real-life application Simon! Could provide a nice question comparing two contestants. Something along the lines of one contestant has lost 2 pounds and another has lost 3 pounds. Who's worked hardest this week? Then lead students onto finding the percentage weight loss in which they find that the 2 pound loss (who weighed 215 pounds) was a greater percentage loss than the 3 pound loss (who weighed 400 pounds).
Daniel Pearcy on  22 February 12  at  02:47 AM #
Oops! Forgot to mention that the question above would be a way to start the lesson.
Nordin Zuber on  22 February 12  at  09:33 AM #
I used this in class today. With this class, there was too much information on the sheet - so I focused just on calculating the loss and percentage loss between Week 2 and Week 3. To make it even clearer (next time) I will get students to highlight the row of Week 2 data so that it's very clear where the baseline is for this part of the sheet. Before we did the sheet, we visited the Biggest Loser website and watched the weigh in segment from the 2011 finale. After watching few results, I then hit the PAUSE button before each result was announced (just after you see the weight before and after) and asked everyone to work out the loss and the percentage lose before hitting PLAY to reveal the answer. This makes it more interactive and gets the class practising before doing the sheet. Thanks for a great resource Simon!

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Simon Job — eleventh year of teaching maths in a public high school in Western Sydney, Australia.
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