Over 100 Linwood School students have been using Banqer since it launched in term one 2015. Colin Hill talks us through the changes he has seen in his students since then.

Banqer provides my children with authentic, real life learning experiences that can be easily integrated in the classroom programme. Children sign a ‘Conditions of Employment’ to start them off. This allows children to get a weekly salary and an income for their bank account.

Conditions of employment would include things such as respecting others and equipment, being in school uniform, helping with keeping the classroom tidy, putting things away when they have finished, completing any outstanding work before school and having a good attitude. These often link to key competency focuses. All key aspects when holding a job as adults.

Children have compulsory weekly costs that include renting their computer, photo copying and renting storage for bags and books. This tries to emulate the real world with having a job and earning money, and allowing enough money for the necessities in life such as rent, power, food and telephone.

They can spend any extra money on renting couches, bean bags, using toasted sandwich makers to toast their sandwiches. These are set prices but we often run auctions when something is in high demand. These are considered luxuries in life just like SKY, the latest smart phone, or a new car.

Children can earn extra money for doing set jobs around the classroom

Children can earn extra money for doing set jobs around the classroom, which children apply for in writing to their teachers. They can earn ‘ bonus bucks’ for academic progress and other things that might crop up in the day to day running of the class. Pretend money is also given out during the day. Children are required to self-manage and look after that money and bank it before school. Just like waiting for the bank to open in the ‘real world’.

Since using Banqer we have heard stories of children having conversations with their parents about opening their own savings account so they can earn interest on their money. As well as improving mathematical knowledge; Banqer has allowed us as teachers to provide learning experiences that have a ‘real life’ feel to them. If children make mistakes and learn from banking experiences in a controlled environment as children it’s likely to prevent mismanagement of money as adults.