Teaching the principles of finance can seem daunting, but it is something
that students find extremely engaging. The fundamental features
of money are both mathematical and social constructs, and hence can be
usefully entwined with many areas of the curriculum as enrichment activities.
While this proposal talks directly to the current Year 6 Australian
Curriculum: Mathematics (Units of Measurement) and Australian Curriculum:
History (Australia as a Nation) it is also forward looking to the curriculum
around financial literacy outlined in the Australian Curriculum, Assessment
and Reporting Authority (ACARA, 2012) report on The Shape of the Australian
Curriculum: Economics and Business and the Australian Securities and
Investments Commission (ASIC, 2011) National Financial Literacy Strategy
commissioned by the Government, with the expectation that a substream
Money and Financial Literacy will be introduced into Mathematics in the
near future (ASIC, 2013). While there are many programs aimed at primary
school student financial literacy provided as downloadable resources from
major financial institutions my experience is that these are not widely
used, at least partly because they tend to rely on sheet based exercises.
The advantage of the approach reported here is that it is interactive and
involves hands-on learning engaging the entire class and attracts students
and teachers to learning based around finance. This can be furthered with
programs such as the MoneySmart teaching resources available at www.