Kelly S. has been teaching 4th grade in the suburbs of Chicago for 5 years. She is always looking for innovative classroom ideas and decided to blend the digital and physical aspects of ClassEquity by introducing QR credit cards!
It’s no secret that financial literacy has become a social issue. I have always wanted to integrate financial education through a classroom economy, because why not start them young? When I moved to a district which had a focus on Positive Behavior Intervention Systems, I knew it was the right time to start.
Now, students can scan their credit card and be taken directly into their ClassEquity account!
Keep reading to learn how Kelly S. incorporates student credit cards into her classroom economy!
Students need their credit cards in order to check out on our shopping days. They scan the QR code and log in to show their dashboard is clear and are able to shop. Students have to keep these in a safe space. If they don’t have their card, they aren’t able to shop that day.
I started off the conversation about what a classroom economy is and what their responsibilities are. Although this is mostly used in PBIS settings, I wanted to incorporate some Responsive Classroom components. As a class, we discussed and agreed on what bonuses/fines are appropriate and how they fit our class expectations. We then went through the “application process” where students signed up for their account. Once they were signed in, they received their card and could decorate it! It was a very clear expectation that these cards could not be lost and failure to show it on shopping days meant no shopping that day.
When deciding to implement a classroom economy, one of the biggest hurdles was tackling the preparation. Having to print and cut pages of paper for “money” seemed time consuming and wasteful. Finding ClassEquity had an answer for all of my reservations. The digital platform is user-friendly for both teachers and students and streamlines the process to make it more efficient.
When introducing ClassEquity the students had so many questions. A student asked me how much they would have to pay in taxes. When I explained there are no taxes, they proceeded to ask about sales tax (assuming I was only referring to income tax when I said no). After reassuring them there were no taxes in my classroom, he gave the air a nice fist bump and shouted, “DUTY FREE?! Nice….”
Students love to be mini adults. Talking with them and showing them the parallels between ClassEquity and the “real world” not only promotes buy-in but also teaches them life long skills. Also make sure to give a lot of thought on the pricing of your shop and bonuses. A $5 bonus might not seem like much, but if they can earn them multiple times a day then you may sell out of your shop quickly. Making adjustments is a great way to teach them about inflation and how economies can change.
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