Every kid deserves a teacher that will teach them about money.

The problem is that worksheets and a couple 30-minute lessons are not going to leave a lasting impact on your students.

You want to teach your students financial literacy skills, but you’re not sure exactly how to do it in a way where they have a real experience with money that they remember for years to come.

In 2014, I started what's called a CLASSROOM ECONOMY

Students apply for class jobs and they get paid in classroom money. They use that classroom money to pay rent on their desks, pay any classroom fines for misbehavior, purchase items in a monthly auction, and buy their desk to watch it grow in value.


The course is broken up into 4 modules to help you start teaching your students about money.

MODULE 1 | Set Up

You'll learn exactly what a classroom economy is, you'll brainstorm which class jobs you'd like to incorporate (I give you a ton of ideas), and you'll decide what your classroom fines will be as well as what behaviors and actions can earn students bonus money.

MODULE 2 | Applying & Hiring

You'll learn what to share on day 1 when you introduce the students to the classroom economy, you'll create the job application form for students to fill out, you'll learn what to consider when hiring students, and you'll get your online classroom banking system all set up.

MODULE 3 | Training & Routines

You'll train students by creating a checklist for each student to follow as they perform their job, you'll learn how manage the fines and ensure students are paying them, you'll learn how to conduct 'bonus money day,' and how to set up the classroom auction.

MODULE 4 | Ending the Year

You'll learn how to set students up to purchase their desk as an asset so they no longer have to pay rent, you'll get ideas of what to do when students go into debt, and you'll brainstorm ways to create a memorable final experience in the classroom economy.

BONUS MODULE | Distance Learning

Throughout the modules, you'll be provided with various modifications that can be made if you are doing distance learning.  This module contains all those modification in one place as well as an additional student project template that you can use to teach your students how to make money from home using eBay.


Each module will be broken up into several lessons.

  • Each lesson has an instructional video that you will watch.

  • You'll be given resources in the form of Google Doc templates that you can customize

  • Each lesson will have an assignment for you to complete to tailor the classroom economy experience to your context.


This course was designed before the days of distance learning but it is adaptable to a distance learning and hybrid model.

Throughout the course you will find the modifications that I've made this year when my class has been fully remote.

Teachers have gone through the course while teaching remotely and have shared that they found it to be a great way to connect with students and drive engagement during distance learning.


"Thom helped give me the courage to try a classroom economy with my 5th graders by showing me how he implements it in his classroom. I really appreciated his thorough explanations, and it transformed my classroom into a fun, experiential learning environment."

-Aaron Riedl

Thom's course on Classroom Economy provided very practical advice on how to start, implement and maintain a classroom economy for middle school students. His videos are short and sweet and provide easy to follow instructions. Because of his course, I was able to start my economy very quickly. I highly recommend this course. My students love this system and have learned the value of a dollar.

-Tatiy Webb M.Ed

I love how Thom has outlined all the steps with videos and digital examples of the documents. What started out as something to engage my students has actually provided many insightful moments into the lives of my students! I cannot wait to see the creativity my students will bring to their jobs! The classroom economy is one of the best teaching resources I have EVER purchased.

-Cindy Garwood


  • 1


    • 0.1 | Welcome the the course!

    • 0.2 | How to use this course

  • 2

    Module 1 | The Set Up

    • 1.1 | Classroom Economy Set up

    • 1.2 | Creating Class Jobs (Fully In-Person)

    • 1.3 | Creative & Curatorial Jobs (Hybrid)

    • 1.4 | Supportive Jobs (Hybrid)

    • 1.5 | Deciding on Fines & Bonus Money

  • 3

    Module 2 | The 1st Couple Weeks

    • 2.1 | Introducing the System to the Students

    • 2.2 | Hiring Students

    • 2.3 | Setting up the Virtual Bank

    • 2.4 | Training Students & Beginning Fines

  • 4

    Module 3 | The Monthly Routines

    • 3.1 | Fine Day

    • 3.2 | Bonus Money Day

    • 3.3 | Auction Day

  • 5

    Module 4 | Later in the Year

    • 4.1 | Students Buying Desks

    • 4.2 | Students Going into Debt

    • 4.3 | Final Auction & Ending the Year

  • 6

    BONUS MODULE | Distance Learning Classroom Economy

    • Jobs, Bonuses, Fines, and Marketplace

    • PROJECT | How to Make Money From Home Using eBay


Every student deserves to learn about money. Be the one that teaches them in a way that leaves a lasting impact.


  • When does the course start and finish?

    The course is completely self-paced and course materials will be available as soon as you enroll. It takes about 4 weeks to complete the course, working 60-90 minutes per week.

  • Will I still have access to all the materials when I finish the course?

    Absolutely. Once you've enrolled, you'll have lifetime access to the course materials.

  • What happens after I enroll?

    You will receive an email with a link the course page. Bookmark that page! Begin working through the course content at your own pace.

  • Is this course run by an instructor?

    This course is a self-paced online course, which means you won't get any grades, have scheduled class times, or meet directly with an instructor.

  • Would a classroom economy work in my grade level?

    I have seen a classroom economy done at every grade level in K-12. While the course has been designed around how I've implemented it in the middle-school context, all aspects of the curriculum are customizable (which is what many of the course assignments focus on).

  • Do you accept purchase orders?

    Yes! Please fill out THIS FORM.

  • Do you provide professional development for schools?

    Absolutely! I can provide workshops to get your teachers up and running with a classroom economy of their own. For more info on PD, email me at [email protected]


Thom Gibson

Thom Gibson is a two-time teacher of the year educator in Austin, TX with over 10 years of classroom experience. He's taught taught middle school math, robotics, physical science, esports, and YouTube Video Production. Outside of education, he's a practitioner of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a chicken wing (and ranch) connoisseur, loves to run, and is actively involved in his church.


Every student deserves to learn about money. Be the one that teaches them in a way that leaves a lasting impact.


Before you decide to purchase the course on your own, TALK TO YOUR ADMINISTRATION!

Many admin have PD funds for teachers and you don’t get what you don’t ask for.  Even if you think they’ll say no, just ask.  When you make the ask for this PD course, instead of asking “Can I have this”, tell them “This is why I need this, and this is how it will positively impact students”.  Here are a few talking points:
  • Google your state’s financial literacy standards and say how this course will help you address those standards with an ‘experiential-learning’ model.  (If your state doesn’t have specific financial literacy standards, use the National Standards in K-12 Personal Finance Education by JumpStart)

  • Additionally, the classroom economy serves as a classroom management tool (through the use of classroom fines) that you’ll be able to implement with all of your classes and students.  You’ll also receive guidance on how to incorporate the fines with students on behavior plans.

  • Learning how to teach financial literacy will enable you to become a more effective teacher and a more valuable asset to the school.

  • By becoming a more effective teacher, you will improve the outcomes of your students.

  • The course provides many resources that are modifiable Google Docs, which is less lesson planning time on you and more time and energy to put towards building relationships with students and teacher self-care.

  • When they say yes, bring your laptop to them so you can sign in with your own username and password but pay with the school PayPal or with credit card.  Purchase orders are also available.