Teaching Your Students About the Stock Market

Keywords: Instructional Strategies, Math, 4-6


The stock market is a complex structure that many adults, let alone children, struggle to understand. However, this part of America's free-enterprise system has played a major part in history and can also be used effectively in math and business classes. So why not let your class play the market?

The first step is to have your students decide on the stocks they would like to purchase. They can research them in class or at home (great idea to induce parent involvement).

If you have online capabilities, try playing the Stock Market Game on the internet. Their online address is http://www.smg2000.org. This site provides an "electronic simulation of Wall Street trading." It's designed to help students (and adults) understand the market, its costs and benefits, and the sources and uses of capital. Students in grades 4 through 12 compete against each other during the fall and spring semester of the year (two ten-week competitions). They are allowed a hypothetical $100,000 in common stocks that are listed on the American Stock Exchange (AMEX), the Nasdaq Stock Market (NASDAQ), and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). As the teacher, you are provided with great information and lesson plans to aid in your instruction. You can follow the stocks every day or every week. And the person who makes the most money at the end of the period can be rewarded.

Most of the time, your students will be so excited to make more money, albeit imaginary funds, that they don't even realize they are learning valuable information and utilizing important business and math skills. You can also make up stock portfolios, write about the causes of financial panics, discuss the importance of the FDIC and how that is closely related to stocks, and make flow charts and graphs that map out how the individual stocks are faring and comparing. In any case, your students will gain more than their money's worth.

This information was taken from the Teacher's Edition Online Newsletter

Uploaded By: Jodi Gray/KSU/Deaf Education Major