5: A Taxing Question
Time Required: 30 minutes
Taxing Question Student Reproducible 5 (PDF);
Students discover, through the eyes of fifteen-year-old Susanna,
what it's like to receive their first paychecks. Discussion and/or
writing assignments help students to better understand taxes and
why we pay them.
You might want to begin this lesson
by asking students:
Have any of you ever received a paycheck? If so, did it look
like what you expected? If not, why not? Were you surprised to
discover how much of your salary goes to taxes? What do you do
with a paycheck (how do you turn a check into cash)?
Read through the material with your class, and go over Susanna's
findings. Review the sample paycheck and identify the different
withholdings and taxes.
To conclude the class, ask your class
to write a paragraph about one or more of the following questions:
Do you have a bank account? Why or
why not? Why would you open one?
How do you feel about paying taxes?
Are taxes a good idea? Why or why not?
What role do banks play in moving money
from one place to another?
Extension ideas: Invite guest
speakers from the community to talk about their financial experiences:
bankers, entrepreneurs, shopkeepers. Or, invite recent graduates
to speak with your students about the financial issues they face
after high school.
Social Studies: Production, Distribution,
Economics: Limitation of Resources;
Decision Making; Income
Financial Literacy: Money Management;
Photos from top to
bottom: © Rubberball Productions, © Robert Daly/Stone/Getty
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