Fifth graders in Texas are expected to be able to define four types of taxes (payroll, income, sales, and property). They are also expected to explain the importance of developing a budget and balance budgets.
Make these abstract skills come to life in The Game of Life--a real world financial literacy situation. Students will randomly draw a job and associated salary (found at the end of the powerpoint). Then, as the teacher guides them through the slides, they will have to make financial decisions. They will also reap the consequences of these decisions (i.e. buying a big house means higher bills and property tax!).
The powerpoint is self-explanatory with directions on each slide. Students record their financial decisions on a white board or lined paper to keep track of their spending. At the end is a link to a two page reflection sheet to reinforce these concepts. On this page, students will define key vocabulary, suggest ways to increase income and decrease spending, and balance simple budgets.
Use this game as a summative review before a unit exam, a one lesson STAAR review, or as a conversation starter to discuss economic challenges people face in our society.
**Please note that all of my numbers are approximations based on the area of the country that I live in. Some numbers are adjusted to make the game work out more evenly or simplified to be developmentally appropriate. If you have questions about any of the values, please let me know!