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Carrboro Elementary School Second Grade Holds Handmade Market

CES market Cayman Second grade students at Carrboro Elementary School (CES) received a crash course in Economics 101 at the end of April when they created and hosted a school-wide market selling handmade goods: bookmarks, bracelets, whoopee cushions and so much more! The children had worked hard to make a wide array of colorful and useful goods, but the real fun began when they set up tables in the lobby, displayed their wares-- and began collecting Real Money.

As part of the North Carolina social studies standards for second grade, the Economics and Financial Literacy strand requires students to consider how “businesses in a community produce goods and services based on the wants and needs of consumers.” And what elementary school consumer base is likely to pass on inexpensive and unique whoopee cushions? Teacher Jessica Bigelow said students “earned wages and then explored the concepts of spending and saving money. During the market, the students practiced their math skills by counting money and providing change to the consumers (who were mostly parents!)”

CES second grade market wares Bigelow added, “By participating in the market, the students learned the major role of the economy in the community and the world in a hands-on application of using their money skills.” But the lessons didn’t end with the market day.

“A few days after the market, we had some parents volunteer to come in to be our "bank tellers" for a day,” Bigelow said. “The students were able to ‘cash’ their checks for their labor in the market.  After cashing their checks, students decided if they were going to spend, save or donate some of their income to a non-profit organization. The second grade students decided to donate to TABLE (the local non-profit organization).”

As the final part of the unit, CES student will experience a “walking field trip” later this month to deliver the donation to TABLE.