Create an Economy

Five stacks of silver coins, each is a little taller than the next, with the shortest on the left and the tallest on the right.

During Maths Week set up a classroom economy system with your class.

Things to decide with your class:

  • How learners will earn their wages, this might be by taking on school roles such as cloakroom monitor or eco rep or by helping with tasks around the classroom.
  • A rental price for classroom items such as a desk, chair and stationery.
  • If learners will be required to pay rent weekly or monthly.
  • You might also introduce certain items for sale such as extra pencils, whiteboard pens or replacing broken items.

Each week/month learners should be ‘paid their wages’ and a record kept of this. Learners might also be awarded bonuses or have fines deducted from their pay depending on what rules you decide to set up with your class.

Decide how savings can be spent for example ‘sit with a friend pass’ or ’10 minutes free choice time’. Ideally the incentive should increase the more the learners are able to save up.

Once your classroom economy is established this can be used to explore financial responsibility and different financial concepts throughout the year for example;

  • Discussing debt/loans if you have pupils who do not keep up with their rental payments.
  • Consider introducing a tax rate which all ‘classroom citizens’ must pay.
  • Ask pupils to contribute a percentage of their wages towards classroom ‘bills’ such as electricity or water.
  • Over time you can explore ways to reduce these bills by encouraging them to consider how to be more energy efficient or more resourceful with supplies.

Although this site is American you might find some of the resources and suggestions helpful as you set up your classroom economy.

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