Escape from Knab!
Well, the anagram for Bank isn’t a clever one (they just spelled it backwards), the website is amazing! Escape from Knab is an interactive simulation that leads students through a series of financial decisions, from choosing a job to figuring out how much money they’ll have to pay in taxes, as well as expenses occurred as they try to escape from the alien plant of Knab. I would recommend this website (it’s free – magic word) for anyone wanting to engage students with decisions of finances and economics from 4th grade on up to 8th grade. The premise is both hilarious and educational.
The setup is simple. After winning a trip to the planet Knab, the student learns that they don’t have enough money for a return trip ticket, which costs $10,000. On top of that, they only have six months to raise the money before the return ship to Earth leaves. Using simple language, and providing links to terms such as interest, savings, budget, and credit card, this website takes students through their six month journey to raise enough money to return home complete with interactive expense accounting, practice writing a digital check, and deciding which hovercraft will best fit their budget. Decisions on how much food they purchase will even affect whether they are healthy enough to make it to work (I lost a week’s pay due to being ill).
The website includes an educators’ page complete with activities to use in class while using the website, and lessons to incorporate into your Social Studies or Junior Achievement plans.