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Rough Answers

An exercise on rounding values in a calculation to find an approximate estimate of the answer.

Rounding Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Bounds Exam-Style Description Help More ...

This is level 1: round the numbers in a basic calculation to one significant figure to obtain an approximate answer. You will be awarded a trophy if you get at least 9 correct and you do this activity online.

\(59 + 31 + 48\)

Correct Wrong

\(59 + 31 + 44\)

Correct Wrong

\(74 + 98 + 37\)

Correct Wrong

\(56 + 64 - 4\)

Correct Wrong

\(76 - 73 + 495\)

Correct Wrong

\(314 - 49 - 17\)

Correct Wrong

\(21 \times 97\)

Correct Wrong

\(82 \times 91\)

Correct Wrong

\(77 \times 88 + 696\)

Correct Wrong

\(1239 \times 4\)

Correct Wrong

\(7846 \div 36\)

Correct Wrong

\(997 + 96 \times 88\)

Correct Wrong


This is Rough Answers level 1. You can also try:
Level 2 Level 3 Level 4


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Jen, Australia

Saturday, June 1, 2019

"I just tried level one. It looks like a great way to reinforce significant figures to students, through mental estimates! However, the question says give answers to one significant figure - and I just got most of the questions "wrong", as your answers are mostly to 2 significant figures."


Sunday, June 2, 2019

"Thanks very much for your feedback Jen. The instructions ask for the numbers in the questions to be rounded to one significant figure; not the answers. The answers should be given exact after the pre-calculation rounding has taken place. Once again thanks for the feedback, much appreciated."

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Description of Levels



Rounding - Before doing these exercises you will need to know how to round numbers to one significant figure.

Level 1 - Round the numbers in a basic calculation to one significant figure to obtain an approximate answer

Level 2 - Round the numbers to one significant figure to obtain an approximate answer to calculations including decimals and fractions

Level 3 - Determine whether an approximation is a over-estimate or an under-estimate if each of the numbers are rounded to one significant figure

Level 4 - Real life problems and puzzles

Bounds - Determine the upper and lower bounds when rounding or truncating quantities used in calculations.

Exam Style Questions - A collection of problems in the style of GCSE or IB/A-level exam paper questions (worked solutions are available for Transum subscribers).

Breathe Easily - A real-life question that can be (roughly) answered by making some approximations.

Fermi Problem - Unleash your approximating skills to estimate something quite unknown in this Advanced Starter.

More on this topic including lesson Starters, visual aids, investigations and self-marking exercises.

Answers to this exercise are available lower down this page when you are logged in to your Transum account. If you don’t yet have a Transum subscription one can be very quickly set up if you are a teacher, tutor or parent.

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Curriculum Reference

See the National Curriculum page for links to related online activities and resources.


The video above is from the maths520 channel.

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Answers to this exercise are available lower down this page when you are logged in to your Transum account. If you don’t yet have a Transum subscription one can be very quickly set up if you are a teacher, tutor or parent.

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