Glencoe Accounting

Need Some Ideas?

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Use the activities and teaching suggestions listed below to help clarify and personalize accounting concepts for students. Have your students share their ideas and discuss how they arrived at their solutions. Encourage students to flex their problem-solving muscles and to think creatively.

To share your ideas for teaching Glencoe Accounting in the classroom, click here.

Savings Goals

Have students create a personal monthly savings goal. How will they generate income? Will they open a savings account? Is the savings meant for a particular purpose (e.g., college funds, car, or clothing)? How long will it take to reach their goal? Encourage your students to use a spreadsheet program like Excel® to create their budget.

Income and Expenses

Have students make a list of their personal sources on income and expenses. Then ask students to share their lists. Did any of the students organize their information by listing all the income first followed by all the expenses? Have students compare their lists to a trial balance. How are they similar? How are they different?


Tell students that they've just won the grand prize of $1,000 in a local contest, and they've decided to invest the money in the stock market. Would they invest all the money in one stock or buy several different ones? How would they decide which stocks to buy? What financial information would they want to know? How would they analyze this information? Have them follow their stocks for a week and record the fluctuation in price. Did their stocks increase or decrease in value?

Identifying Types of Businesses

Write this list on the chalkboard: theater movies, gasoline, soft drinks, car wash, CDs, music concert, jeans, haircut and style, tickets to a sports event, car. Have students decide which items are provided by a service business and which items are provided by a merchandising business. Ask students to explain what makes each a service or merchandise.

Handling Cash

Using play money, distribute $200 to each student. Ask students how they would protect and budget their "cash." How would they keep track of how they spend the money? Have them write down ways that they would handle their money.

Banking Fees

Have students investigate different banking services along with the fees for those services. Are there ways to avoid banking fees while still receiving services? What are the bank's requirements for waiving certain fees?

Working Experience

Take a poll of students in class with part-time jobs. Are they paid by the hour? Do they get paid commissions? Have them calculate the percentages withheld in various taxes. Are they surprised by the difference in their gross and net pay? Discuss how they might project their earnings and budget their income.

Corporation Comparisons

Have students bring the business section of a local or regional newspaper to class, or provide a few copies for the class. Have students look up the stock listings for well-known companies such as IBM or Procter & Gamble (NYSE). Then have students search for companies such as SAS Institute or Kinko's, both of which are privately held corporations and thus will not be listed. Have students discuss the differences between privately held and public corporations.

Uncollectible Accounts

Have students imagine that they routinely adhere to a personal monthly budget. Introduce the idea that a friend has asked to borrow $50. The friend promises to repay the loan in two weeks. After two weeks, the friend is unable to repay the loan. This situation leaves the student unable to pay his or her monthly debts. Ask your students how they would handle the situation. How will the student meet his or her monthly debts?


Have students choose a partner and plan a school activity. Tell partners to assign responsibility for each part of the plan, based on abilities and experience of each partner. Then have partners share their plan in class. If they were being paid for their work, how would they split the money? How would they fund their operation? Have students draw up a partnership agreement.

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