Super Tuesday, OPEC and Russia quarreling, oil prices dropping, the Fed cutting interest rates, and more people testing positive for Coronavirus every day…Whew! There’s a lot going on in the world!
ALL of these headlines can be tied into a highly-engaging learning experience for your students through this stock market activity. I have used this activity for years as a classroom competition, but never before have I had a year where there has been so much going on in the world at once that directly impacts the results of this activity!
My goal with this stock market activity isn’t to go too in depth about stocks, corporations, monopolies, CD’s, bonds, mutual funds, or compound interest. My goal is for my students to make connections between issues happening in the world impact businesses and the global economy.
Every student is given $50,000 to invest into 10 different companies using the Nasdaq web site. If students want to work with a partner then the partnership gets $50,000 (they can’t combine their money and start with $100,000).
What’s nice about this activity is that it you have an instant hook of engagement to start class every day by pulling up the NASDAQ web site to see how the market is doing. If you use the Google Drive version you can easily open up and project a student’s stock pics on the screen, copy and past their stock symbols into the NASDAQ site, and then see how their stock picks are doing at that moment. What’s nice about using the NASDAQ site is that stock prices are updated every 7 seconds
I have students look at the 52 week hi/lo of the stock they’d like to buy to see if they are buying their stock at an opportune time. If they like Nike products, then I have them do a search for Nike on the NASDAQ site. If they like binge-watching movies on Netflix, then buy Netflix. This help bridge their personal connection to businesses and how the events of the world impact those businesses, thus impacts their money.
What if they can’t find the stock information of a business they want to invest in? That might happen. Some companies like Chaco, who makes a popular sandal, is not it's only publicly traded company. They are under a "parent company," and their parent company is called Wolverine Worldwide, Inc, and the stock symbol is WWW.
My classroom competition usually runs for a quarter of school (9 weeks) and we see who made the most money at the end of the competition on selling day, which is when students sell every share of stock they have at the going price at that time. What’s nice about this activity is that you don’t have to be good at math or technology because all of the formulas are already created and will calculate the profit or loss for students as seen below.
This really is a lot of fun to do with your students... especially with all that is the news right now! It was interesting asking students why stocks would be down on Super Tuesday and hearing a responses like, "Maybe people are waiting to spend their money until they know who might be a possible president." Then we saw stocks go up a bit on Wednesday to see if that idea played out. Sure enough, it did. Then hearing more stories as the week went about about the Coronavirus, then watching CNN 10 and hearing about Russia and OPEC being at odds causing oil prices to tumble and seeing what that did to the rest of the market. I love that this resource gets kids talking about the world.
Here's a peek at how the stocks have been performing over the past week that my student teacher and I chose.
Here's what other teachers who used this resource had to say about it...
If you'd like to give this stock market activity a try then just click the image to the left. I'd love to hear how it went for you and your students in the feedback section of the review, or feel free to comment on this post.
Matt @ Surviving Social Studies