Hurricane and hunch fuel Coweta's 1st place team in Stock Market Game

alt

Looking over their portfolio work are, left to right, Lauryn Roland, Justin Young, Brandon Shaw and REACH teacher Beverly Head.

By REBECCA LEFTWICH
rebecca@newnan.com
A couple of weeks into The Stock Market Game, Beverly Head was having second thoughts.
It didn’t help that when the Northside Elementary REACH teacher called a colleague in another district for guidance, he was shocked she had undertaken the competition with her young fifth-grade teams.
“But we showed him!” said a triumphant Lauryn Roland, who along with teammates Brandon Shaw and Justin Young came back from “tanking” at the beginning to finishing in first place out of 70 teams in Coweta County and 28th out of more than 3,900 teams across Georgia.
The trio – and three other Northside REACH teams, as well as other elementary, middle and high school teams participating in the competition – immersed themselves in the world of finance for the 10-week project, which required heavy math and research skills.
“They had to calculate the cost of stocks and fees, and they had to do percentages,” Head said. “They also had to research to make sure their stocks met certain criteria.”

Along the way, the students learned to categorize stocks – transportation, electronics, retail, farm, industry – and how stock values can be influenced by everything from time of year to the weather.

Although each team bought and sold stock separately – rotating math and purchasing skills among the three members each week – Head allowed all of her REACH participants to their research as a group.

“The first couple of weeks were tough,” Head said. “But as they started understanding better and getting more comfortable, they improved each week.”

In the end, it was a combination of Hurricane Sandy and a fifth-grade hunch that turned the tide for the winning team.

“I went home to research stocks, and my dad said it was the wrong time of year to invest in transportation stock,” Young said. “But I just felt like we should buy it, so we did.”

Hurricane Sandy displaced hundreds of families, caused millions of dollars in damage and required emergency and building supplies.

As a result, Young’s team earned $31,000 from a combination of Winnebago, railroad and electronics stock to top the competition.

Roland, Young and Shaw all say they are good at math – even though Roland said she “doesn’t like it” – but that participating in the Stock Market Game made honing their skills fun.

Young’s favorite part of the experience?

“The part about winning,” he said.

Shaw is looking forward to his.

“Mine hasn’t come yet,” Shaw said, adding he is looking forward to the meal provided by the game’s sponsors, which have invited the Northside team to a May luncheon in Atlanta to honor the students’ success.



More Local

Fatal wreck on Hwy. 29

A man lost his life Monday after his vehicle traveled off the road, overturned several times and collided with a number of trees. Around 10: ... Read More


Homeless man found guilty of robbery

William Therrell Otero, 31, the homeless man accused of robbing a massage parlor with a knife in April 2013, was found guilty on all charges ... Read More


Sheriff’s office on lookout for four robbery suspects

Coweta County authorities are on the lookout for four suspects who robbed a gas station convenience store by intimidation early Sunday. Arou ... Read More


Coweta behind state average in mental health resources

Editor’s note: This is part of a special focus this week on depression and suicide in Coweta County, in the wake of the death of actor ... Read More


State school superintendent candidates debate

The new Georgia Milestones Assessment, Common Core, and charter schools were topics at Tuesday’s debate between the Democratic and Rep ... Read More

Coweta steel wire plant being acquired by Insteel

Insteel Industries Inc. has announced the acquisition of one of their primary competitors with facilities in Coweta County. Insteel Wire Pro ... Read More