Investing in the stock market is child's play.
At least it is for three pupils at Greenbrier Middle School, who will soon be honored for their participation in a statewide contest called the Stock Market Game.
Starting with $100,000, Greenbrier Middle eighth-graders Taylor Lamb, Hilary Matfess and Dylan Schott used their math skills to raise their mock stock portfolio during the 10-week trading period of the game to $128,373.
"It was pure luck," Taylor said of the trio's investment strategy.
His gifted math teacher and the school's game director, Sheila Perun, disagreed with the 14-year-old's assessment.
"I played the game when I was in school and I thought it was a wonderful application of some of our basic middle-school math - decimals, percentages and rounding," Perun said. "Those were the skills they used and used well."
The Greenbrier Middle students ranked 93rd out of 400 teams competing in the game sponsored by the Georgia Council on Economic Education.
"We invested in shares of Apple, Coca-Cola and Google," Dylan said.
"We each took a different stock and managed it ourselves," Hilary said.
Each week in class, the pupils tracked the progress of their stocks and calculated their earnings.
"Sometimes when you work with math it's not realistic," Perun said. "Working in this game makes it real. They experience the value of having math skills."
Hilary, Taylor and Dylan will be honored along with dozens of other top-earning teams at a luncheon May 2 in Atlanta.
Despite their success in the game, none of the eighth-graders is planning careers as stock brokers.
"I want to be president of the United States," said Hilary, who quickly admitted that becoming rich would help with that goal.
Had they really earned nearly $30,000 for their stock choices, Hilary and Dylan said they would put the money in a college fund. Taylor opted for a new car.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.