Grades 4-5

How My Classroom Economy Works

The classroom economy program is a robust classroom management system that benefits both teacher and students and has minimal impact on the curriculum.

Implementing the program is an easy three-step process:

  • First, you spend a few hours before the school year starts—gathering materials and planning how to customize the program for your school and your own classroom.
  • Second, you spend a few classroom hours in the first month of school introducing the program and training the students to complete their tasks.
  • Third, you monitor the students' progress throughout the year and provide support and guidance when necessary.

As they perform their tasks, the students are rewarded for helping you manage the classroom efficiently. At the same time, they will learn valuable skills—such as responsibility, the value of saving, and delayed gratification—that they will carry with them throughout their lifetimes.

The beauty of the program is that you don't need to teach these lessons; rather, your students will experience them and learn for themselves. As one teacher told us, there's a thrill in seeing "the lightbulb go on" when a student realizes he or she should have saved money for the next month's rent instead of overpaying for an item at the auction.

Core objectives for students in Grades 4–5

Through My Classroom Economy, students learn valuable life skills in an experiential way.

Specifically, they are able to:

  • Take part in a simulation of real-world economic activity.
  • Learn the value of earning a paycheck, as they bank salaries from their jobs.
  • � Learn how to budget their spending, manage a loan, balance a checking account, and make scheduled payments.
  • Discover the importance of saving money to obtain what they want.
  • Find out that every decision has an opportunity cost.

At these grade levels, students earn and spend dollar amounts of three and four digits to match their math skills. They are also given more documents to deal with—for example, bank slips for deposits and withdrawals—to emphasize the importance of recordkeeping and attention to detail. The documents also provide key data for reflection during the year-end wrap-up.


Elementary School

K - 1

2 - 3

4 - 5

Middle School

6

7 - 8

High School

9 - 10

11 - 12

Investing