Classroom "Mini-Economy" Project

Economics and Money Kindergarten Lesson Plan
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We love Kristen Poindexter's idea to treat the classroom as a 'mini-economy' - with jobs, paychecks, goods for sale, the whole nine yards! Start by creating a list of duties that your students can safely complete around the classroom - line leader, paper collector, paper distributor, attendance keeper, shelf straightener, etc. Kristin's job list included 30+ positions that could feasibly be completed once a week as well as several seasonal duties {like zoo keeper and gardener} to fill in the gaps.

Things to consider for your own mini-economy...

  • Modeling after real world experience, create applications, inviting your students to apply for the position they'd like to fill in the classroom. [NOTE: Since your kinders are likely to respond to variety, assign job 'periods' - i.e. months, nine weeks, semesters, etc. - so that they can experience all facets of the classroom 'economy'.]
  • Hold brief 'interviews' before assigning positions, allowing students to tell you why they'd be perfect for the position.
  • Create a method of payment {like Kristin's 'Bulldog Bucks'}, as well as a schedule for payment, providing your students with a 'billfold' to keep their money in. You might also consider showing students how to keep a simple register to keep track of their earnings and expenditures.
  • Purchase or create items of value that students can put their earnings towards - small craft kits to take home {print out direction cards and place appropriate craft materials from the supply closet into a small Ziploc bag}, homemade journal pads, inexpensive pens/pencils, stickers, etc.

Be sure to check out Kristin's website for her mini-economy plans and for several of the forms she uses to go with this project!