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Ideas wanted for lessons about money and bartering

Discussion in 'Religious Education' started by durgamata, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. durgamata

    durgamata Occasional commenter

    The following message and replies come from another site I engage with. I am sure there are many here who will have great ideas and suggestions to add.

    Happy 2012 to all.

    I am making a unit of work for year 9 on Religion and money. Researching Buddhist attitudes to money I found some interesting stuff about the beginnings of the use of money. 

    "What a money system does is segregate society and produces a sense of lack. The idea of wealth becomes a measure of one's worth."

    I would like to get the idea of bartering across to pupils. Has anyone got any ideas or resources for this sort of thing? Thanks


    I will think about this one.

    The closest I have come is when working on Supply in a Catholic school we were looking at the passage in the OT about Abraham and Lot. They had too many flocks to continue together so they needed to split up. Lot could decide whether to go to the fertile valley or take his family and flocks to the dryer  and more barren hillsides.

    I always like to link work to our current society and the experiences of our pupils so I asked them to reflect on this problem in the light of our society. We came to the conclusion that it is like there being too few jobs and many people becoming out of work. Do they move somewhere else? 

    That brought us to the whole question of an uneaqual world and economic migrants, wars which have an underlying economic basis and more. Someone asked why we have to have money so I gave this as a homework question. 'Why do we need to have money and what might we do instead.' 

    That gave rise to some wonderful essays. I think it was a year 9 top set class. I marked the essays but just at that point the original teacher returned. She was not interested in this work because it wasn't on the syllabus. I think she was irritated that I had taken them off on this tangent and I don't think she even returned the essays.

    However it was one of the most interesting and engaging topics I have ever worked on.

    I will give the bartering system some thought and would welcome any ideas you may have or receive for this important topic.

    Have you ever played the 'orange game' ? It is a resource produced by a Fair Trade charity and involves pupils making oranges to sell at a market.

    The pupils are subject to changes in the market (increase, decrease etc) and rent, bills, food, medical and education costs.

    I took part in this during a cross curricular day , but I planned to use it in RE!

    If you can get volunteers to be a nasty buyer, an evil moneylender (who charges interest, comes to collect, repossess equipment if they fail to pay) and a bill collector. It is done in 'weeks' with a five minute countdown for a week.

    At the end, you ask the pupils to declare their earnings/loss and question them on how they felt - was it easy to make money? was it easy to get out of debt? How did you end up in debt? etc.... If I can find the website with the resource on I'll post it - it was a brilliant game and the students loved it!!!

    Here it
  2. i'll search more if i have time to see where this comes from - but in case i haven't:
    bartering in a hobbsian state of nature is no kinder than a monetary system - in fact, one of its main disadvantages is that it favours the strong ('i'll have 10 of those for one of these, and what are you going to do about it?) and initially, a money -based system can favour the weak by creating a fixed playing field
    we think of bartering as fairer partly because in the 21st century uk, the people who barter are nicer people
    just call me [​IMG] 's advocate
  3. durgamata

    durgamata Occasional commenter

    I don't think there is any hidden motive here - just a desire to explore the whole field of economics and how societies work,

    Any strategies required which help our pupils to think about money and understand society better.
  4. oh - i didn't mean that - it's just that most resources/papers i have seen extol the virtues of barter and humph about money transactions - and teenagers who have thought about this invariably seem to come out on the barter-good, money-bad side of the argument, ignoring or dismissing the alternative view
    sorry - still haven't had time to track down my source

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