Lesson 1: A world without money



  • Single class period


Activity 2: The ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ of barter


Imagine a world without money – would you be better or worse off? Before money, people traded goods and services. In this lesson students learn about the concept of barter, which is a system for exchanging/trading goods and services without using money.

Step-By-Step Instructions

Activity 1: What is barter?

  1. Ask the class if anyone has ever swapped one thing for something else or swapped anything with family members or friends? Note their responses on the white/blackboard.
  2. Explain that ‘barter’ is the correct term for these types of transactions or deals.
  3. Ask the students if anyone has ever heard of this term before and if so, in what context?
  4. Write the following definition of barter on the white/blackboard:

Barter is the exchange of goods or services, without the use of money.

Activity 2: The ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ of barter

  1. Divide the class into pairs of students.
  2. Distribute one copy of Student Worksheet: The pros and cons of barter to each pair.
  3. Invite students to work together to complete the worksheet.
  4. Write ‘Pros’ and ‘Cons’ as headings on the white/blackboard.
  5. Invite students to consult their completed Student Worksheet: The pros and cons of barter and call out what they have written in the ‘pro’ and ‘con’ columns. Record their responses under the appropriate heading on the white/blackboard.


Lesson 1 Activity 2 Student Worksheet: The pros and cons of barter

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