What Is Money? What Do We Need to Know to Be Money Wise?

Emiko Furuya, Fifth Grade, E.E. Waddell Language Academy

Curriculum Unit (pdf)


Elementary school students tend to have less difficulty handling money when numbers have dollar signs in in front of them.  However, when the numbers lose their dollar signs, they suddenly change into decimal numbers that are more difficult to handle.  One of the goals for this unit is to use money to help students understand that numbers are numbers with or without dollar signs.  Another goal for this unit is to help students to understand the concepts of money and capitalism. By supporting students in deepening their understanding of math concepts and strengthening their math skills, the students will be able to explore how to run their classroom with a self-created currency and what kinds of math they would need to balance that currency successfully.  This unit is designed to be taught at the beginning of the school year for the students to foresee that what they are going to learn in math is relevant to what they will need to be self sufficient.