In response to an email I received the other day, I have reviewed a number of free stock market investment simulators and games. Some of the simulators I found were linked to brokerage houses or other investment advertisments. After a little digging I found two stock market simulators that do not appear to be linked to investment firms, are completely free, and are appropriate for use in high school and possibly middle school classrooms.
StocksQuest is a stock market simulator game that is a part of the Thinkquest.org network of services. Each student or group of students has a fictious $100,000 to invest as they see fit. Students then monitor and adjust their investments for optimization. StocksQuest is designed for use in high school classrooms. Teachers can create and manage classes on StocksQuest. Educators will also find a list of fifteen lesson plans corresponding to the StocksQuest game. The lesson plans are designed to scaffold up to help students build and develop knowledge of investment terms and strategies.
The Virtual Stock Exchange from Market Watch is a free investment strategy simulator. The VSE doesn’t have the classroom management options or lesson plans that StocksQuest has, but does offer more options in terms of real-time data and investment news. The VSE from Market Watch provides a place for participating in existing public games or starting your own games. The option of participating in existing public games gives students the opportunity to measure their investment skills against people outside of their classroom.