Classroom Economy... Anyone else?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by BreezyGirl, Jul 14, 2016.

  1. BreezyGirl

    BreezyGirl Companion

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    Jul 14, 2016

    I am in BC and our curriculum has had a makeover. In math, they have included Financial Literacy which I think is a wonderful addition. Instead of teaching it as a topic, I thought that implementing it all year through a Class Economy would be more fun and could also act as a rewards program.

    How did you set yours up for ease of use? My thoughts for now: classroom jobs earn "money," bonuses given for a variety of reasons, rent paid for desk, classroom store, auctions, log book to keep track of expenses and purchases.

    Thanks!
     
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  3. mckbearcat48

    mckbearcat48 Cohort

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    I think this is really cool. You can take it to the next level by instituting supply and demand pricing on things as well. One thing to consider is having rent of the desk shift with the interest rates.
     
  4. BreezyGirl

    BreezyGirl Companion

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    Interest! I like that! I was going to have classroom jobs where they get paid. The wage depends on the job. Cleaners will get paid more as I have found most do not want to sweep the entire floor. :)
     
  5. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    One year my some of my first graders had a pyramid scheme and a gambling operation going with the "brain bucks" that I would give out for good behavior.
    I loved that class.
     
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  6. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Jul 15, 2016

    I give out "star bucks". I basically give them out for staying on task, and speaking in English (I'm in Mexico, so I have to have some way to motivate them to speak in English with their Spanish-speaking peers). Every time they go to the bathroom it cost a star buck (two if it's carpet time). On Friday they have to pay a $5 Star buck fee to participate in Friday fun time...then, certain stations have a fee attached to them as well (the art station, and the ipads). Also, students can buy a day with the bean bag for $10 star bucks. Oh, and one thing I started to do the last few months of this past school year was if they needed a new pencil before it was time for me to pass out new pencils, they had to pay $3 Star Bucks for the new pencil. I have only been using these star bucks for 2 years but I love them! It's funny because just collecting them is fun for the kids. Also, subs are enouraged to pass out star bucks, as needed, when subbing. It's truly a win-win situation for all parties involved.
     
  7. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    I've been looking into this all summer. I came from a PBIS school and I LOVED that it was already set up and ingrained in the students and prizes were school wide "principal for the day, sing on stage at lunch, pep rally VIP passes, etc". My current district doesn't do this so it's case by case on the teacher.

    How do you guys manage the cashing in part. I hate buying stuff I think they'll like and those "dollar" items add up. Last year all the kids just seemed to like the same few things. I can't do the big stuff like the other school because I'd have to get it approved and coordinated with other teachers and some say they'll accept the eat lunch until the kids cash in and it's not a good lunch day or what not.
     
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  8. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I ask the same as above. I think a classroom economy sounds so much fun but if it went beyond classroom perks... well... I am afraid I'm not the type of teacher to spend bunches of my own money on the classroom.
     
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  9. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    Same. I'll spend but I'm not a "buy toys and gadgets for my students as a reward" type of teacher. I honestly don't like food parties as a prize. I can barely handle the required 'Valentine, Christmas, fall festival, etc" and food in the room.

    I like the idea of movies though and extra recess but I can't think of anything else. I'm always on the fence about passes. We're not suppose to really give homework and I balk at no shoes and sit by a friend and things like that.
     
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  10. BreezyGirl

    BreezyGirl Companion

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    Jul 16, 2016

    For a classroom store, I look at garage sales and online sites as many people have free items. I will also cruise the dollar stores and looks for cheaper items that are sold in larger quantities. I don't spend a lot of my own money as it can add up quickly. I am also going to do coupons. I won't do the no shoes because of safety. I was thinking of doing coupons for chew gum for one day, sit on the fun chair all day, and sit near a friend. I'm still working on my actual store and how to manage it.
     
  11. mckbearcat48

    mckbearcat48 Cohort

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    Teachers chair was a huge favorite in the rooms I subbed in.
     
  12. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    One thing I know our third grade team did at our school was have a "Funny Money Bazaar", where the kids would each make something - whether paper airplanes, or necklaces with beads, or nifty drawings, and then they would sell/buy stuff between each other. One of the fourth grade standards is understanding needs/wants and starting to develop that idea of supply/demand, so doing something like that and having an economy in general (and perhaps even letting the kids develop what all the money could be used for in class, or how they might use it amongst themselves) would help develop that understanding as well as possibly help with behavior!
     
  13. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    Jul 16, 2016

    Those systems sound great to me but then when I really think about it I get hung up on how much work they are to maintain and also how much they focus on extrinsic rewards.
     
  14. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Honestly, these were and are still my two biggest hold-ups in regards to using it.

    When I realized what else I ended up doing though throughout the year, I realized that there still was some extrinsic reward of some sort, and so it wasn't actually too much different.
    I read somewhere that extrinsic rewards for simple tasks (i.e. doing a chore) isn't that bad, relative to extrinsic rewards for more complicated/higher-thinking tasks (i.e. completing a math extension). If I do use it, it'd be solely focused around the former...and aimed to mimic the "adult" world as much as possible.
     
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  15. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    I was so skeptical at the beginning of last year about omitting extrinsic rewards but I can tell you that my students (5th graders in a Title I urban school) did really well without them.

    I did occasionally give out stamps for quality classwork and stickers when we played games, but there were no food/ candy rewards, no passes for anything, etc. There were a few comments/ questions (mainly from students in other classes) about why I never gave out candy, but other than that it was no big deal. Every so often I gave a surprise reward like extra time outside to play but that wasn't tied to anything in particular. It was amazing!

    They still had jobs in the classroom but they didn't get anything for doing them.
     
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  16. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    Jul 16, 2016

    Have them use a register and you (or another adult) must sign every entry AFTER the student has added or subtracted and written their new balance down. Feel free to implement fines as well. For big events (like an egg hunt around Easter) charge a large amount - give them something to save up for. In addition, whenever you want to give students money, you could give them actual fake money and then they bring their registers to you at the end of class to sign.
     
  17. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Jul 19, 2016

    Do you mean like a bank book, and if so, is there a printable that you know of and use?
     
  18. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    Yes, the size and general lay-out of a bank book. I don't have a template but I'm sure there are tons online.
     

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