Money, enterprise and child labour


A personal touch

People love owning things that reflect their personalities. Ask your students to devise a business creating bespoke personal items for their friends. Even if they have to wear a uniform their pencil case can be unique, just like them.

Start with a "style board" of the kind used by professional designers: a collage made from scraps of material, photographs, text, sweet wrappers - anything that captures something of what they want from their finished design.

For a modern foreign languages lesson, incorporate words or short phrases in the target language. These could evoke the personalities of the student's clients by describing them or naming things that matter to them.

Once the students have created a style board, offer them a range of different personal items. How about a knitted mobile phone cover or a photo frame? For the frame, you could include words that evoke unseen aspects of the scene in the picture, such as "breeze" and "laughter". Students could create a whole set of items in the same style. This way, they can make money by selling something priceless to their friends.


Pocket money soon adds up

Ask your class to work out how much pocket money they will receive each year until they are 18. How long would it take them to save for a #163;500 computer if they received #163;20 a month?

Compile a survey asking parents and grandparents how much pocket money they received when they were children. What is the difference between what they received and the average amount that children get today?

More open-ended problems can also be explored: Jake is given five coins for his pocket money. How much might he have received? What are the largest and smallest amounts he could have been given? How many different totals, combining different coins, can students come up with?

Finally, give the children a choice. They can receive #163;2 a week for 10 weeks or they can receive 5p in the first week and 10p in the second, with the amount doubling each week until week 10. Make a note of their choice, then challenge them to work out which is the most lucrative option.


Working for a living

It can be instructive to introduce the very different lives of children in other countries - particularly those who have to work for a living from a very young age.

One way of doing this is to have your class pretend they are journalists who have been sent to write about child labour. Ask them to complete a one- or two-page report on what they find at a factory, for example. Give them a list of information they should include in their story, such as the name and location of the workplace, how many people work there and facts and figures about the village or town the children live in. How important are the children's wages for their families?

Ask the students to think about how much harder life is for children growing up in a poor area or country. What impact does this have on their daily lives?

Another option would be to prompt younger students to pretend they are workers at a factory and to write a letter detailing their way of life. Or they could describe the life of a Victorian chimney sweep.


- Develop students' French skills with Teachers TV video clips about playground games and pocket money. bit.lyPlayground Lessons

- Explore banking and pocket money with Personal Finance Education Group's lesson. bit.lyPocket MoneyBanking

- What chores do your students do and what pocket money do they receive for them? Ask in French with CamilleRaoul's resource. bit.lyHousehold Chores

- Help children learn about profit and loss and make presentations for their own businesses using StratfordCity's project. bit.lyEnterpriseActivity


- Play the money collector game to help students recognise different coins. bit.lyMoneyCollector

- Add up coins in purses with a worksheet shared by nehap. bit.lyMoneyIn MyPurse

- Which coins could be used to make a given amount? Find out in springy's piggy bank activity. bit.lyPiggyBank Money

- Take your class back to a time of child labour with blimmers' lesson on Victorian Britain. bit.lyChildLabourLesson

- Practise numeracy skills with a TESiboard activity on saving. bit.lySavingUp.

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