What's In Your Wallet? Show Me...

Kindergarten PBL - by Donna Chavarro

What's In Your Wallet? Show Me The Money!

Created by: Donna Chavarro

Email: dchavarro@coppellisd.com

Applicable Grades

Kindergarten - Elementary School


Math and Social Studies

Kindergarten TEKS - Standards

Math TEKS 4 -

(4) Number and operations. The student applies mathematical process standards to identify coins in order to recognize the need for monetary transactions. The student is expected to identify U.S. coins by name, including pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters.

Math TEKS 9 (A,B,C,D) -

(9) Personal financial literacy. The student applies mathematical process standards to manage one's financial resources effectively for lifetime financial security. The student is expected to:

(A) identify ways to earn income;

(B) differentiate between money received as income and money received as gifts;

(C) list simple skills required for jobs; and

(D) distinguish between wants and needs and identify income as a source to meet one's wants and needs.

Social Studies TEKS 6 (A,B,C) -

(6) Economics. The student understands that basic human needs and wants are met in many ways. The student is expected to:

(A) identify basic human needs of food, clothing, and shelter;

(B) explain the difference between needs and wants; and

(C) explain how basic human needs can be met such as through self-producing, purchasing, and trading.

Social Studies TEKS 7 (A,B) -

(7) Economics. The student understands the value of jobs. The student is expected to:

(A) identify jobs in the home, school, and community; and

(B) explain why people have jobs.

Social Studies TEKS 16 (A,B) -

(16) Social studies skills. The student uses problem-solving and decision-making skills, working independently and with others, in a variety of settings. The student is expected to:

(A) use a problem-solving process to identify a problem, gather information, list and consider options, consider advantages and disadvantages, choose and implement a solution, and evaluate the effectiveness of the solution; and

(B) use a decision-making process to identify a situation that requires a decision, gather information, generate options, predict outcomes, take action to implement a decision, and reflect on the effectiveness of the decision.

Project Overview

The PBL “What’s In Your Wallet? Show Me The Money!” is a project for Kindergarteners to learn about how to earn money to satisfy the needs and wants of their classroom, differentiating between the two, as well as what job skills are necessary to do different jobs, coins and money, and why monetary transactions are important. They will use their social skills to problem solve, make decisions and work collaboratively to do jobs and earn money to satisfy their needs and wants.

Elements of Project Learning

Elements of Project Learning: (Y/N Checklist)

  • Organizes tasks around a driving questions

  • Engages students in in-depth inquiry

  • Includes a public audience

  • Establishes a need to know

  • Encourages voice and choice

  • Incorporates revision and reflection

  • Students work in teams

  • Students complete a teamwork agreement

  • Includes students in the defining stage of their project

  • Includes students in the planning stage of their project

  • Students manage the successful completion of their project

  • Includes students in the evaluation of their project

The Driving Question

How can we as “kindergarten workers” use our job skills to earn money to

buy the things our class needs and wants?

Project Duration

Six Weeks (Begin in January and finish in February)


Define: Week 1

Plan: Week 2-3

Do: Week 4-5

Review: Week 6

Schedule of Activities

Week 1 - Define: Introduction to the entire project – Thinking Map – circle map of economics, Driving question, list of Knows and Need to Knows on a t-chart,

Week 2 - Plan: Learn about “Wants” vs. “Needs” using a thinking map (tree map), Make a class list of wants and needs, Learn about US Coins (guest speaker possible), talk about economics and the importance of monetary transactions

Week 3 - Plan: Discuss and research different jobs, (guest speaker possible) make a list of jobs skills, discuss jobs that our class can do, form groups for different jobs, assign group

Week 4 - Do: Hand out flyers, get jobs, have a start date set for jobs next week

roles, make flyers promoting our different services, design thank you cards

Week 5 - Do: Learners do their jobs for their employers, get paid, give employers satisfaction surveys, give “thank you” letters to our employers

Week 6 - Review: Buy needs and wants, reflect on project – what we learned. Did we meet our expectations? Likes/Wonder/Next Steps - what we liked, any questions, what we would do differently next time

Project Outcomes

The goal is to figure out what jobs kindergarten learners can do (what job skills needed) to earn money to buy some things, from our list of needs and wants, for our class. In the process, we will also learn all about U.S. coins and the difference between money earned and money given to us as a gift. The end result will be to use the money earned to cash in on the “needs” and “wants” for our classroom (monetary transaction). This project will not have parents or anyone “gift” us the money for our needs and wants. We need to earn it using our set of job skills.

PBL Essential Elements Checklist

Project Specifics

This is a design project

our learning motivation is a problem and the end result is a solution.

For this project, we will use the following documents:

Team Agreement Document

  • Who will be involved in the project, and what is each person’s role or roles?

    All of my kindergarten class will be involved in the project. We will have groups of 4. We would decide on the different group jobs - but everyone would pitch in and be a “worker” earning the money for the class, as well as making the class decisions on our needs and wants.

  • What are each team member’s strengths, expertise and preferences?

    Each team member’s strengths, expertise and preferences would be taken into account when deciding on groups and group jobs. Also, we may have 5-6 different worker groups depending on which jobs skills each kindergarten group has and the services they decide to offer.

  • How and how often will the project team communicate with each other?

    This PBL team will meet almost everyday during our math or social studies time, even if it is only for a little while. If however, they are totally engaged in the research or other aspects of the project - we could devote more time to it- especially as there will be so many details to work on to culminate this activity.

  • How will outside experts, coaches and advisors be used in the project?

    Outside experts, coaches and advisors may be used to launch our PBL, as well as guest speak about different jobs that we are curious about, and even a banker to help us learn about monetary transactions and coins.

  • How will decisions be made?

    Most of the decisions will be made together as a class, but some of the decisions will be made by the different groups. (I, of course, will help mediate if need be, and also be in charge of the final decision of sorts.)

  • How will project changes be handled?

    Depending on what the project changes will be, they will be handled by the class, each group, or by me.

  • How will disagreements be resolved?

    In the individual groups, the disagreements will be resolved by trying to work it out - compromise, give and take, communication and collaboration - the project manager for each group may have final say (but of course, I have the final, final say).

Most of the tasks will be done by everyone in the class. Could have the following job roles / titles in each groups:

  • Project Manager - leader of their group

  • Supplies Manager - in charge of PBL folder and getting all supplies for group

  • Creative Artist - designs the flyer with input of group

  • Tech Head Researcher - does the online research with group assist


The project will be evaluated in two ways: self-evaluation and employer satisfaction. We will be evaluated by the jobs we do - we will have a satisfaction survey for our employers to fill out (that will not only include how the job was done, but also any 21st century skills that were observed - especially collaboration, teamwork and communication), and also we will self-evaluate our performance by reflecting on if we were able to satisfy our needs and wants with the money we earned (our deliverables). We will also note if there are things we would do differently next time, and ask our employer for any additional feedback as well.