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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Staff Editorial

Classroom earnings teach fiscal safety

It seems that most of us have problems managing our finances these days — our city, our state and our nation. We all seem to fall prey to financial mismanagement.

However, Kelly Lorance’s fifth grade class at Aloe Elementary practices fiscal responsibility by learning the in-and-outs of economics first hand.

Her class has implemented its own economy where students are buying and selling school supplies and classroom real estate — prime desk space, if you will.

Students earn currency for good grades and other random positive acts they commit. They then use the money to pay classroom bills like rent for desk rental, or to pay off the fines racked up for poor grades.

The students determine (to a degree) what is earned for positive actions, and what are charged as fees for missed assignments and less enviable actions. Students even have the freedom to buy the real estate where students sit and adjust the rent as they see fit.

Lorance is teaching her class fiscal responsibility at an age where they still take something away from playing a game. It’s a shame that many of the adults in our country can’t be students in her class — they have a lot to learn.

It’s great that Lorance is giving her class a taste of the real world without completely breaking their spirits. There are financial penalties in her classroom, but they are not backbreaking — and they can be corrected by attaining good grades.

Not only is she teaching her class how to balance budgets at an early age, but she is also encouraging academic achievement through the reward of classroom currency. According to a Victoria Advocate article, Garrett Weber is already a successful classroom landlord.

These small games make an impact in the lives of students. It forces them to ask important questions like, “Should I buy that really cool pencil eraser for $10 or should I save that money for desk rent?”

These are important questions that we find ourselves facing today as adults, and the earlier we can learn that sometimes the pencil eraser isn’t worth it, the better.

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