Budgeting in "Seayland"

On Mondays, rent is due in 6th grade. But since Friday was payday, and all the students received their weekly salary of $600 Seaybucks, they usually have money to pay it. If you’re wondering what Seaybucks are and why 6th graders need to pay rent, then please join us as we take a tour of Seayland. “Seayland is a money management economic stimulator,” said Middle School Math teacher Mr. David Seay, founder of Seayland. Mr. Seay designed Seayland to teach the students how money works in the real world. Students are paid wages for being part of the class, but they need to rent their desks, and desks by a window or wall ($125 Seaybucks) are more expensive than desks in the middle of the room ($100 Seaybucks).

Students can buy Seaybonds, which pay 10% and mature in 10 school days, sell services and goods with other classmates, and save their Seaybucks for big expenses, like lunch with an administrator or a class party, “But those are in the thousands of Seaybucks,” said Mr. Seay. To keep things interesting, Mr. Seay throws in one random event every day that might affect a student’s income and expenses. “For example, one student becomes another student’s landlord, so that student gets rent paid directly to them, but then I say the desk needs upkeep and the landlord is charged $50 Seaybucks,” he said.

Students need to keep track of their income and expenses on a check register, which Mr. Seay occasionally audits to make sure they have recorded everything correctly. Incorrect calculations result in a fine. Many students used the currency to create businesses that they advertise on a classroom wall.  Meira Simon and Rivka Sukhodolsky started a book lending library ($2 Seaybucks a book), Tehilla Yoffe and Elisheva Kanner started a hair salon ($4 Seaybucks for a ponytail or bun, $6 Seaybucks for a braid) and Rochel Friedman offers check register accounting services ($5 Seaybucks). Adina Fellheimer started three business: a picture drawing business (portraits are $10 Seaybucks), a note-taking business for Halacha class (starts at $2 Seaybucks) and a desk/ cubby cleaning business. Adina said that of the three, the note taking business brings in the most money.

Next up is an advisory council. Students will elect three representatives to devise a taxation policy for Seayland.

On Thursday, citizens of Seayland received some bad news. Seayland had been stricken by a pandemic, and four of the citizens were unable to work. Luckily, all the citizens had given ma’aser (charity- 10%) of their wages, so there was a fund to help these unfortunates pay their rent. They won’t be evicted from their desks...and after recovering can go back to making Seaybucks.