Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

The Best Sites For Learning Economics & Practical Money Skills


'money' photo (c) 2012, 401(K) 2012 - license:

I’m teaching an Economics class to English Language Learners this summer, so thought it would be helpful to my students, and readers of this blog, and me to make my next “The Best…” list related to that class.

My class will be primarily comprised of Intermediate English Language Learners (with a few Early Intermediates, too), so this list is only going to include sites that are accessible to that level (though most would certainly be useful to advanced and native-English speakers). I’ll be making a future list of The Best Sites For Learning Basic Money Skills & Vocabulary that will be focusing on sites for Beginning English Language Learners.

At the end of this post (but not included in the ranked list) I also share an additional sites that I think is excellent, but is probably only accessible to high-Intermediate or advanced English Language Learners.

I will rank sites according to which ones I think are best on this list, unlike the last few ones I’ve posted. There are a large number of financial literacy sites out there, but I have to say that I was surprised at how many of them I just didn’t think were very good.

As is the case with all of the sites on my lists, you can also find links to them on my website. Now, all these links are in various sections on my website, though I am slowly but surely adding versions of these “The Best…” lists to a separate page designed for student self-access.

By the way, this is sort of a “sister” list to The Best Websites For Students Exploring Jobs & Careers and my next list, The Best Sites To Learn Life Skills.

Here are my picks for The Best Sites For Learning Practical Money Skills:

Number nine is actually comprised of a number of links to economic games, and most are related to running a small business. You can operate a lemonade stand here and here, a coffee shop here, and an ice cream stand here (along with playing a few other financial games).

Hands On Banking from Wells Fargo is number eight. Most of it provides audio support for the text, and there are different levels of learning modules ranging from fourth grade to adults. I would have ranked it much higher if it was a little more interactive. (this looks like a newer version of the site)

Financial Fitness For Life has a lot of similarities to Hands On Banking, and has a little more interactivity. I’ve ranked it at number seven.

Banking On Our Future is number three on my list. You have to register for it, but it’s free, quick, and easy. It’s a very complete, and accessible, financial literacy site.

Brain Pop Economics Movies is number two, and is the only site on the list that you have to pay in order to access. Brain Pop has also made a few of my other lists. I think it’s worth the money,and you can sign-up for a free trial.

And now, for my number one rated site for learning economics and practical money skills…it’s The Everyday Life Project, which has also made other “The Best…” lists. It’s free, though you have to register for it (it’s very easy to do so). It has excellent interactive exercises on many money-related issues.

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, there is one other sites that I consider excellent. However, I think the English required to use it is just a little too high-level for many Intermediate English Language Learners. The site is What’s Up In Finance?

The Shaft: How Some Companies Prey on the Poor is a nice infographic from “The Mint” highlighting the dangers of Payday Loans, Bad Credit Cards, and Rent-To-Own.

This is a good infographic explaining how a person’s credit score is calculated.

And here’s an infographic showing how you can improve your credit score.

The FICO Frenzy is an infographic describing how to maintain a good credit score.

Quest For Money is an online game from The Mint. Unfortunately, there’s no direct link, but if you go to that page you’ll see it on the right.

The cost of bad credit is an interactive from The Washington Post.

Junior Achievement Build Your Future is simple and engaging.

It All Adds Up is not as flashy as some of the other sites on this list, but it does have some useful interactives.

Here’s a new announcement from The Cultural Orientation Resource Center:

With training and guidance from COR Center colleagues at the Center for Applied Linguistics, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Bureau of Consumer Protection has developed a website with financial literacy information for people with low literacy levels. Available in both English and Spanish, materials include resources regarding managing money; credit, loans, and debt; and identify theft and scams.

I checked it out, and it’s a great resource. It’s very accessible, and includes audio support for the text. Too bad it seems short on images and videos but, nevertheless, it will come in very handy.

Gen i Revolution is a series of financial games. Teachers can create virtual classes and monitor student progress.

Your Credit Score: How to Understand and Improve it

Explore more visuals like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.


The Cost of Living Map lets you pick any two major cities in the United States and it compares their costs of living — overall and in specific categories.

Sites On Economics My Students Will Be Using In Their Virtual Summer School

Fee free to give feedback or make other suggestions in the comment section.

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Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.


  1. Hi Larry,
    You may want to include a few “Young Tales” from Financial Tales, they are currently being used in a few High School Economics classes. The rest of the tales are a bit more complicated.

    Thank you.

  2. Pingback: The Best Websites To Teach & Learn Life Skills | Forward From Here

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  4. This is a great list, I stumbled across it while I was looking for strategies for working with ESL/ELL students in AP Macroeconomics. My AP Macro class has a group of strong English Language Learners, but they are really struggling with the language of multiple choice questions. I’m seeking resources to help them cope with the precise language of the exam’s multiple choice questions. Any suggestions? (I’ve also posted in the AP community but I’m not getting any responses)

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