Students & Teachers LOVE Ravioli Den!

Feb 01, 2017
Featured NGPF Lesson, Investing, Activities

Way back in August of 2015 I created what remains one of my favorite projects — “Joining the Market,” also known as “Ravioli Den” among friends. I started off just wanting to create something that simulated the buying and selling of shares, but it rapidly morphed into an awesome, whole-class game that teaches roughly 10 investing concepts in two class periods: It’s truly one of my finest works at NGPF. So, I brag about it all the time, but recently, teachers have written in to rave about Ravioli Den, too. If you teach investing, you should read on…

In February 2016, Anna Takahashi of Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, CA wrote:

“There was a lot of enthusiasm and excitement about the stock market game (Ravioli Den) in both sections of SCP today. This was clearly a stressful and emotional ride for some students while others absolutely fed off the adrenaline. All were realizing that what appeared as good news might actually not be good news (e.g., national news about the popularity of Ravioli Den or even the stock price – they loved seeing it go up without always realizing they were buying shares at higher prices). The one modification I made was that students did not have to buy 30 shares in Round 1. During 7th period I think most everyone bought some shares; during 8th period a few did not buy shares for the first couple rounds. There’s probably a happy medium. Ravioli Den was lots of fun – great job on this! We only got through Rounds 6 and 7 so we have a few more rounds before we can wrap up… I’m looking forward to part 2 where we can see how a student’s investment decisions could’ve resulted in a huge windfall or major losses.”

In September 2016, Amy McCabe of Culpeper County High School in Culpepper, VA wrote:

“One of my classes is just finishing Investments, and I think I used every one of your resources.  It was awesome…thank you so much!  Jessica, my students loved Joining the Market with the Ravioli Den!  The kids really get into it by the end, and it’s been one of their favorite activities.  :)”

In January 2017, Tony Montgomery of City-As-School High School in NYC wrote:

“I just wanted to give a report on the project: Join the Market. This was the first time I used it, but it won’t be the last. It was great! I was looking for something that I could use after I taught 7.2 Intro to the Stock Market. My classes were not quite understanding how stocks and the market work. I used some non-NGPF materials. I used that material to teach the students how to read and understand information presented on financial websites. Working in pairs, they examined sample listings for stocks, mutual funds, and bonds. They participated in a scavenger hunt for financial information, using online sources. I was running out time; the end of the cycle is fast approaching. The understanding and comprehension still was not where it needed to be…”

“I searched the NGPF site and found Join the Market. I used it in class on Monday & Wednesday. Wow! What a difference. The kids were fully engaged, having spirited debate and thinking deeply about the decisions they were making. Now my students have a clear understanding of the stocks and what can influence stocks and the market. Now, I can use the remaining 4 classes to focus on the final project  5 Stocks on Your Birthday.”

If you’re not yet convinced to explore the project on your own, here’s Tim’s Feb 2016 blog post, giving a play by play of each round in “Ravioli Den.”

About the Author

Jessica Endlich

When I started working at Next Gen Personal Finance, it's as though my undergraduate degree in finance, followed by ten years as an educator in an NYC public high school, suddenly all made sense.