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Ms. Olsen from Berkeley CA is requesting Books through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Financial Literacy for 1st Grade

Help me give my students the tools to learn about financial literacy, such as fake bills, coins, display coins, a cash box, and books about earning, saving, wants, needs, and sharing.

  • $309 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

My first grade students represent many cultures and backgrounds. I work hard to make our classroom a place for all learners to feel safe to be themselves and make mistakes from which to grow. I see it as one of my primary objectives to help my students become happy, healthy, productive members of society. They make my job a joy and motivate me to seek out the very best for them.

I want my first graders to be curious, ask questions, and be joyful, lifelong learners.

Part of my job is to motivate them by giving them a sense of agency and choice. They will be more invested in their learning if they have some say in what we are doing and how we are doing it. To this end, I seek creative and diverse materials and resources.

My Project

I have an annual class project in which students earn class money by doing their job (Coming to school, being on time, turning in important forms, etc.). In addition to being a great incentive for my first graders at the end of the year, we learn all about earning, saving, buying, and pooling resources. Students generate a list of what they can "buy" with their class money, usually including a hug from the teacher, a few minutes of extra recess, and lunch with the teacher. It is incredibly motivating for students and I always encourage my colleagues to give it a try, because it generates an excited buzz in the classroom at a time of the year when students and teachers are feeling quite ready for summer break.

This year, I would like to take my financial literacy project to the next level by getting realistic-looking money and get different denominations to encourage trading with the "bank." I would like to have more books on the topics of earning, saving, wants vs.

needs, and sharing, a metal cash box for a more authentic banking experience, and some large magnetic bills to display different combinations. I think the students will be very excited to see me retire the 8-year-old purple mini-bills I copied out of an old curriculum!

Thank you for helping my students have fun and learn a bit about economics!

Ms. Olsen
Grades PreK-2
More than a third of students from low‑income households

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Fake Money - 100-Pack Copy $1 One Dollar Bills, Realistic Play Money That Looks Real, Double-Sided Pretend Play Prop Money for Movies and Educational Tools, 6.25 x 2.5 Inches • Amazon Business $8.99 3 $26.97
Cash Box with Money Tray Steel Cash Box with Lock 11.8"L x 9.5"W Black • Amazon Business $25.99 1 $25.99
Learning Resources Double-sided Magnetic Money • Amazon Business $25.14 1 $25.14
Bantoye 10 Pcs A4 Zipper File Bags, Zippered Waterproof PVC Pouch Plastic Zip Document Filing Folder 5 Colors • Amazon Business $7.59 3 $22.77
Play Money - $10 Ten Dollar Bills - 100 Count Pretend Play Money Set Realistic Double Sided Prop Money, Full Print Paper Money Novelty 5 x 2.5 inches • Amazon Business $7.99 2 $15.98
Lemonade in Winter: A Book About Two Kids Counting Money • Amazon Business $14.51 1 $14.51
The Squirrel Manifesto • Amazon Business $12.75 1 $12.75
The Wrong Shoes: A Book About Money and Self-Esteem (Generous Kids) • Amazon Business $11.12 1 $11.12
It's Not Fair!: A Book About Having Enough (Generous Kids) • Amazon Business $11.12 1 $11.12
One Cent, Two Cents, Old Cent, New Cent: All About Money (Cat in the Hat's Learning Library) • Amazon Business $9.60 1 $9.60
Mine!: A Counting Book About Sharing (Generous Kids) • Amazon Business $7.99 1 $7.99
Play Money - $5 Five Dollar Bills Pretend Play Money Set Realistic Double Sided Prop Money, 100 Count, 5 x 2.5 inches • Amazon Business $7.99 1 $7.99
The Kids' Money Book: Earning, Saving, Spending, Investing, Donating • Amazon Business $7.95 1 $7.95
Lily Learns About Wants and Needs (Cloverleaf Books - Money Basics) • Amazon Business $5.87 1 $5.87
Curious About Money (Smithsonian) • Amazon Business $3.99 1 $3.99

Materials cost


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Total project cost


Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Total project goal


How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal


3 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


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Project Activity

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