Students Learn Real-World Lessons in Simulated Stock Market Challenge

Target 1: Student Centered Learning – FWSU students will engage in personalized learning involving collaborative inquiry, problem-solving and creative learning opportunities.

Action Step – Highlight, create and model innovative learning opportunities that promote collaborative inquiry, problem-solving and creativity for students and staff.

Seventh graders in Jenn Skerrett’s Extended Learning Opportunity class at BFA-Fairfax are participating in the Stock Market Game. This opportunity is provided by the Vermont Council on Economic Education, and funded by the CFA Society Vermont.

Stock Market GameStudents work in groups of 3 or 4 to manage a virtual portfolio of $100,000.  While the Stock Market Game is a simulation, and no “real” money is at stake, student decisions are based on real time market information.

While students are motivated by the prospect of “making money” and competing against  other teams, there are also other valuable learning outcomes.

  • Students must collaborate and make individual contributions to their group in order for the team to succeed.
  • Students must be able to effectively communicate their ideas to other group members.
  • Students must be able to identify and access credible research and information to inform their investment decisions.

Here is what some students have to say about their Stock Market Game experience:

“While working in a team I learned that communication is very important. I learned this because in order to agree on a stock we had to really reason on what we wanted and why we want it. Communication is a really important step to having a successful business and working in a team.”


“You have to compromise to be able to work as a team, you have to get along, and you have to work with people you may not be friends with.  But that’s life, you can’t just blame one person for the whole team’s failure.”

The students also got a real world lesson on interdependence. The first week of trading saw one of the worst weeks on Wall Street in a long time, due to poor earning reports from many major companies.  In the second week, markets were closed due to Hurricane Sandy.

At the end of November, a Fairfax team was the top performing middle school team in Vermont, and 4 other Fairfax teams were ranked in the top 10 of the 50 middle school teams in the state.  The Stock Market Game continues through December 7.

stock market #1

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