Leneeta Ewing’s financial math class at West Feliciana High School won top honors in the state recently in the fall Stock Market Game.

“More impressive, it was their first time to participate in the competitive simulation,” Ewing said of her students.

The Stock Market Game is an online program of the Louisiana Council for Economic Education used by educators to teach the principles of personal finance.

Topics covered include basic stock market vocabulary, how to read a stock table and where to find tips to help students find and follow stocks.

In the simulation, students are “given” $100,000 to invest in the stock market in real time and compete against other teams within their school as well as from around the state, Ewing said.

Teams placing first, second and third are presented certificates of achievement and awarded a cash prize from the LCEE.

“We want to encourage the students to invest in their financial future and, ultimately, achieve a life of financial freedom. The Stock Market Game is an innovative and fun way for teachers to engage students and begin this most important conversation,” said Laura Smith, president of LCEE. “The curriculum meets state standards, has ready-made lesson plans for teachers wanting to employ extension concepts, and has a companion piece, Investwrite, which allows for the merging of math and English language art skills.”

Ewing said she taught the financial math class for the first time in the fall and she’s trying to build the curriculum from the ground up.

“I was looking for something fun that would benefit all of my students,” said Ewing, who admits to being completely surprised when her classes took first and third places. “I didn’t even know there was a cash prize.”

Students taking the class range from those who have already earned some college credit but need to fulfill a final math requirement to those pursuing a career track who require a practical math course, Ewing said.

“I know this is a tool where I’ll learn more every time I use it. I’ll definitely be using the Stock Market Game again,” Ewing said.

LCEE offers workshops for kindergarten through 12th-grade educators around the state, helping teachers use the SMG and other curriculum pieces in their classroom, Smith said.

“All of our programs are designed to be dynamic in nature and we know that one size does not fit the need for every district, school, classroom or teacher,” says Smith, who encourages teachers to reach out to LCEE with their specific needs.

Ewing’s students finished in first and third places, while David Faerber’s Investment Club team at Lee High School in Baton Rouge took second place.

“Educators like Mr. Faerber and Mrs. Ewing deserve recognition for being the kind of teachers who provide unique learning experiences for their students.

“They don’t just ‘download’ information into their students and expect it to take hold. They know that lasting learning comes from hands-on, memorable experiences,” Smith said.

For information on the Stock Market Game or LCEE’s other programs, visit lcee.org.