This activity gives middle schoolers a glimpse of money management decisions that people face in the real world. The numbers are smaller and easier to manage, but students still sometimes "go broke" and have to downsize. Print out the register for students to complete as you go through the PowerPoint. We had students draw from a bowl to see if they would have 0 children, 1 child, or 2 children; a bigger family pays more for food, clothing, and utilities.
We also copied and cut out the pictures. Students glued their selections on a piece of construction paper. This gave them a good visual of where their money went. If they downgraded, we made a big X over their more expensive option, glued down the new choice, and listed a credit for the difference on their register.