The 50-30-20 Rule

As an example of a spending plan, we introduced students to the “50/30/20” budget rule. Basically, they had to divide up their income and allocate it to spend: 50% on needs, 30% on wants, and 20% on savings. We prepared a pie chart broken up into these percentages and we gave students a monthly income.

To guide their reflection, they had to answer some questions: “what do you need to survive?” for choosing needs, “what brings you happiness?” for wants, and “in the future, what would you want to be able to afford?” for savings.

Our goal for them was to understand that it can be hard to sort out wants and needs, as these categories are very subjective, nevertheless, saving should always be a priority. They also learned how to effectively make choices by working in teams.

10th grade students showed maturity and responsibility when approaching financial decisions. One group even decided to include “friends” in their list of needs, and others wrote “money for college” and “helping our parents” in their savings category.

Location: Constanta, Romania

Date: 14th of June 2021 

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