Dose of reality: Students learn lessons for future from annual exercise

CHANDLER Goddard was out of money, despite taking a second job and despite what she thought was a modest lifestyle.

The eighth-grader was participating in the annual Reality Store event Nov. 1 at Central Middle School, an all-day, make-believe exercise intended to teach students the value of making wise financial decisions and planning for the future.

Goddard’s imaginary dogs? She thought at first that they had to go. But that was before Goddard, who had already been smacked with an imaginary drunken-driving charge, remembered she was putting money from every paycheck into savings.

Event organizers require all eighth-graders at Central to participate in the annual event, which splits students into teams to take turns circulating through simulation booths manned by volunteers. A total of more than 500 students participated Thursday, including 55 non-Central students from the White Creek Lutheran and St. Peter’s Lutheran schools.

Northside Middle School will host its own Reality Store this week.

Every student’s path was different during the Central event. Some students landed high-paying careers that afforded them lavish lifestyles. Others had to take second jobs and get creative with their budgets to make ends meet.

Almost everyone learned a lesson.

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