High Praise for the Stock Market Game

By Jake Shiner and Sam Valentin-

Penn Manor takes its turn at the stock market.

Penn Manor’s government and economic classes are playing what they call the stock market game. According to Jon Boxleitner, Penn Manor’s history department has done some form of this game for the past decade. But this year it changed.

“Well we’ve been doing some form of it for maybe 10 years now. (We) keep changing it up,” said Boxleitner, a history teacher at Penn Manor who manages the game with the help of others.

“We play through Investopedia.” A website that was found by fellow history teacher Chris Meier. “The one thing that is good is we can set it to our own guidelines,” said Boxleitner, referring to the duration, amount of money, price, and other rules.

The new game seems to be more realistic then in past years and teachers believe students are enjoying the learning experience that goes along with it.

“I think so, they seem content and into it. Sometimes I overhear their conversations and they talk about checking their stocks out of class on their own,” stated Boxleitner, in response to if the students are enjoying the game.

Students seem to agree with his point of view. One of his students who is very engaged in the game is Darin Fry.

“(The stock market game) corresponds to the real stocks on Wall Street… it is pretty realistic,” said Fry, a senior, who is currently a week into playing the game. “I thought it was lame at first but now its cool.”

Fry was interviewed in the library, actually on his way to check on how his stocks were doing.

While many people are enjoying the current game, some have a different view of the game from the past.

James Servansky, who played a different form of the stock market game in Matt Scheuing’s class his tenth grade year, said that his experience with virtual stocks was not very realistic and he didn’t gain much knowledge on stock trading.

“[Scheuing] made the companies stock value fluctuate more aggressively than they would in real life. But that was just for fun between classmates,” said Servansky.

But Servansky does agree that it is helpful to have an understanding of the market.

“It is beneficial to see how the stock market fluctuates,” said Servansky. “They learn that stocks are high risk, high reward.”

Servansky, unlike some other students, has been involved in actual stock trading for about four years now.

“My dad bought me my own stocks freshman year and I’ve been dabbling ever since,” joked Servansky.

With the new version of the game, the students seem to be learning a lot more.

“I learned to appropriately invest in stocks, so now I could actually do it,” said Fry.

Fry said that the game plays from February through May, with each student starting with $100,000 virtual dollars. Students are required to make at least five trades and to not go in debt.

Troy Diffenderfer, another senior student playing the game, said, “I think it is really fun, you learn a lot, and it is a cool game.”