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Play the Stock Market Game with Dordt College

January 20, 2014

How much do you know about the stock market? The average person could benefit from knowing more. Dordt College is offering a no-pressure way for anyone to learn more while trying a hand at investing and trading with a virtual $100,000. The Stock Market Game is a 10-week simulation of Wall Street trading that is fun and educational.

“The game guides you in a real-life situation without the pressure of using real money,” said Erica Vonk. Participants can play around with the stock market without having to worry about making mistakes. They will learn how to invest, learn what companies are available to invest in, and be able to evaluate at the end of the game what they did well and how they could improve and make better decisions.

There are two opportunities to play and people can choose to participate in one or both sessions: (1) January 27 to April 4, or (2) February 18 to April 25. The event is free thanks to a grant from the SIFMA (Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association) foundation.

Last year the Stock Market Game was held for teams and individuals from third grade through college. This is the first time that Dordt College’s Center for Economic Education will host the event for adults as well. The game is split into six award divisions: Third–fifth grade; sixth–eighth grade; ninth–12th grade; college level; teachers; and the new adult division.

Dordt College accounting student Nikki Dykstra of Bozeman, Montana, has played the game and taught third graders how to play and what to consider when buying and selling stocks. “I didn’t really know much about the stock market, so I played to help me learn and actually do some mock trading,” she said. Working with the students, she helped them to understand concepts like buying low and selling high, to think through when the best times to trade, and to research traded companies. “They did such a great job, and we all had a lot of fun learning together.”

Krista Bosman, a Dordt College senior from Everson, Washington, has also played the game and it helped shape her understanding of long-term and short-term investing. “In the last round I made the mistake of focusing on a company’s trend for the past few years instead of the past months, so while their overall trend was increasing, they weren’t doing so great in the short-term. I’ve learned that there are different perspectives for investing, whether it is long-term or short-term investing, it can affect which companies you choose to buy stock from.”

To register, go to www.stockmarketgame.org and click on the Register tab. Click Register Now, fill in your information, and disregard the cost section as it is free in Iowa. Students may play in teams or individuals, but teachers and adult divisions are individual only. You can contact Erica Vonk at (712) 722-6341 or Erica.Vonk@dordt.edu with questions. Winning teams will be invited to a luncheon awards banquet at Dordt College on Tuesday, May 6, and prizes will be awarded.

Additional opportunities
InvestWrite Essay Contest: Students who participate in the Stock Market Game may also enter InvestWrite, a national writing competition that is an extension of the game. Students are given a topic and scenario that requires them to assess, research, and formulate possible solutions based on their finding, logic, and ideas. Essays are judged by a national panel and awarded separate prizes.

Free Teacher Promo Games and Training Sessions: Teachers can participate in a free teacher promo game from January 6 to 24 (you are welcome to join late). There are numerous free online training sessions available for teachers at www.smgman-mi.org/free_online_workshops.

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