How To Create A Classroom Economy That Keeps Kids Motivated

Updated: Mar 11


If you are a teacher who has struggled with classroom management, this blog post is for you! We are going to share some of the most common challenges teachers face when it comes to managing their classrooms. To solve these problems, I highly recommend implementing well-developed classroom jobs and a classroom economy system.


When it comes to managing a classroom, some of the most common problems we hear about from teachers are:

1) lack of respect students have for their learning space,

2) desire to maintain a more organized classroom, and

3) kids not working to their full potential


Oftentimes, these problems can be solved by implementing two key strategies: well-developed classroom jobs, and a classroom economy system.

When it comes to developing well-rounded classroom jobs, I recommend giving each student 3-5 different tasks to complete throughout the day. These tasks should be rotated on a daily or weekly basis so that all students have a chance to experience every job.


Defining and Hiring for classroom jobs

Classroom economies can help motivate students while teaching them important real-world skills.

  • By allowing students to be hired for classroom jobs, they can learn detailed responsibilities and feel a sense of ownership over their learning space.

  • Classroom economies connect classroom jobs to the real world, giving students a valuable hands-on experience.

  • Students get paid a salary for each job, which they can save up, or spend to purchase class passes that unlock special in-class experiences.

One of the best things about setting up a classroom economy is that it can be tailored to fit your specific needs as a teacher. You can decide which jobs you want to offer, how much students will get paid, and what they can use their earnings for. Below are a few tips to help you get started:

Define the jobs you want to offer.

Some examples of classroom jobs include:

  • Stamping papers

  • Passing out materials

  • Line leader

  • Taking attendance

  • Sharpening pencils

  • Librarian

  • Germ Buster (doorknobs and handles)

  • Chair Stacker

  • Table washer

  • Whiteboard cleaner

  • Carpet checker

Define application process

Students can apply for jobs by submitting a resume and cover letter. By allowing students to be hired for classroom jobs, they can learn detailed responsibilities and feel a sense of ownership over their learning space.

Decide how much students will get paid.

You can choose to pay your students a fixed salary, or based on the number of tasks they complete. For example, you might give students $5 for every day they come to class on time and ready to learn, or $10 for every homework assignment they turn in on time. When students get paid a salary for each job, they can save up, or spend to purchase class passes that unlock special in-class experiences. Classroom economies connect classroom jobs to the real world, giving students a valuable hands-on experience.

Create a system for awarding class passes.

Class passes can be used to unlock special in-class experiences, such as a bonus activity or a chance to work with a favorite teacher. You can either award class passes randomly, or based on the students’ achievements. For example, students who get good grades might earn a class pass for extra credit or students who show exemplary behavior might be able to choose an activity from the classroom reward center.

Decide what students can use their earnings for.

Students’ earnings can be used to purchase items such as snacks, school supplies, or extra class time. You can also choose to donate a portion of the earnings to charity, or use them to fund classroom activities and field trips.

Set up a system for tracking earnings and payments.

You can use a simple spreadsheet to track students’ earnings and payments, or set up a more complex system using accounting software. Either way, it’s important to have a clear system in place so that students can easily keep track of their earnings and spending.


Classroom economies can help motivate students while teaching them important real-world skills. By allowing students to be hired for classroom jobs, they can learn detailed responsibilities and feel a sense of ownership over their learning space. Classroom economies connect classroom jobs to the real world, giving students a valuable hands-on experience. Students get paid a salary for each job, which they can save up, or spend to purchase class passes that unlock special in-class experiences.


Job training

Training students for classroom jobs like library monitor and pencil sharpener require different skills than most students have been exposed to on a regular basis. Most likely, the library monitor needs to be able to read book titles and possess excellent organizational skills, while the pencil sharpener requires great attention to detail and technique. Training through a modeling approach will give students a chance to see the skills and thinking that will be required for each job.

Examples of what job modeling can look like:

  • To make sure that students comprehend the content, read the job card aloud while displaying it for them.

  • The teacher can present the steps and explain his or her thoughts aloud in this interactive approach.

  • Ask them what they noticed when you demonstrated the task.

  • Model the task for one to two days.

Encourage students to apply for the position.

Once the student has seen modeling how different jobs are done they will be prepared to start applying for positions.


A teacher might say, "In order to be a library monitor, you need to be able to read book titles and possess excellent organizational skills." The teacher could then model how to read a book title and organize books by reading the title of a book and then shelving it in the correct spot. After a few days of modeling, the teacher could then put out a sign-up sheet for students to apply for the position of library monitor.


It is important to provide students with a chance to be part of the classroom community and give them hands-on job experience. Allowing them to take on a classroom job not only teaches responsibility but also helps develop skills needed in the real world. Classroom economies can help motivate students while teaching them important real-world skills. By allowing students to be hired for classroom jobs, they can learn detailed responsibilities and feel a sense of ownership over their learning space. Classroom economies connect classroom jobs to the real world, giving students a valuable hands-on experience. Students get paid a salary for each job, which they can save up, or spend to purchase class passes that unlock special in-class experiences.