The Stock Market Game
Here is an example of the way that schools are using the current financial crisis to teach students about the stock market and the importance of saving and investing at a young age. The program, called The Stock Market Game, allows students to use up to $100,000 of hypothetical money to buy, sell, and trade stocks over the course of a semester.
Most students are losing money these days when they invest, but the teachers see it as a good opportunity to talk about using the stock market to invest in the long term, not just over a 10 or 15 week period. Also, students have been able to pull from their own knowledge and experience to determine what stocks to hold on to and which to sell. As the article says:
Nery Trujillo wondered whether her team should hold on to Best Buy, because "people aren't going to go to Best Buy and buy Guitar Hero, because they've got to buy gas."
Sounds like a good way to get kids thinking about the stock market and illustrate how the current financial situation is affecting our economy.