Mathematics and the Stock Market



Day 1

Before you can invest in the stock market, it is valuable to know how it began and what exactly it is.  Today, we will begin with a discussion about your current thoughts and knowledge of the stock market.  Through Activity 1, you will research the history of the stock market, how it works, and learn basic components of the stock market.  I have provided some helpful websites in Activity 1 that you may use to guide your research, however, you are welcome to use other websites as well. Any websites that you use must be cited as resources in your final product. 

Activity 1: Introduction to the Stock Market

I have provided the links to a couple websites. You are free to use these sites or find your own.  However, any websites you use must be cited properly in your final product.  Therefore, make sure to write down the url of the site so that you won't forget where you got your information later.  At the bottom of the Activity 1 worksheet, using MLA format, cite the resources you used including the websites I provided if you used them.

Open the following document before beginning your research, Activity 1: Introduction to the Stock Market. You may type your answers into the document, save, and print.

The following are links that may be helpful to you in Activity 1. 

http://www.themint.org/kids/what-is-the-stock-market.html  Helpful sections include: "What is the stock market?" and "Ways to Invest."

http://library.thinkquest.org/3088/  When this website opens, click on the section labeled "the stock market." On this page, the following sections will be helpful: "Introduction", "The Beginning", "How it works", and "What is a Stock." 

This assignment may intially be completed on the worksheet.  When you open the Activity 1 worksheet, you may type your answers in the space provided and turn it in on the due date.  However, in your final product, you must include your history of the stock market from Activity 1 in your Glog.  Remember that your online poster has to include multimedia elements i.e. graphics, video, audio, etc.  Here are a few different ideas for how to present the information in Activity 1 in your Glog: as a text document, a fictious video or audio interview or newscast format, or create a song or rap.

 Day 2

Today, you will begin by watching two BrainPop videos entitled "Stock Market: Buy Low, Sell High" and "Stocks and Shares". You must complete the quiz at the end of each video and email your results to me at [email protected].  Go to the following link to access the videos: http://www.brainpop.com/.

Activity 2: Part 1 - Understanding a Stock Report

Open the attached document entitled "Sony Stock Report."  This is an example of a typical stock report.  The SNE in the parentheses is called the ticker symbol.  A ticker symbol is a lettering system used to identify a stock.  A stock report contains important information about the price of the stock, the increase or decrease in its value, and how many stocks have been sold. A quote is the price of a stock.

In Activity 2 Part 1 - Understanding a Stock Report, you will be learning about the meaning of many of the terms used on a stock report.  Knowing this information helps a person to understand how his or her stock is doing in the market on a daily basis.  You will be defining the following terms: Last, Open, Previous Close, Change, Percent Change, P/E, Ask, and Dividend/Share.  Check out the other terms and definitions as well.  

Download the following worksheet: Activity 2: Part 1 - Understanding a Stock Report. You can type your answers into the document, save, and print.

Go to the following link to complete Activity 2: Part 1 - Understanding a Stock Report.

http://www.econedlink.org/lessons/index.php?lesson=292&page=student  Scroll down the page until you see the stock report.  Scroll over each term in order to see its definition.  Define each term on your worksheet.

Activity 2: Part 2 - Where's the Math?

Through defining the terms found on a stock report in Activity 2: Part 1, you also learned a little bit about some of the math that is used in order to produce the stock report.  Looking back at the previous link, you will create a concept web using Text2MindMap. You may want to create the web by hand first. Next, open the website www.text2mindmap.com. Begin with "Stock Report" as your main title.  Then create multiple branches that include the various terms found on the stock report.  From each of those branches, create another branch that states the mathematical operation or concept that is used in calculating each of those figures.  Save this file and print it out.  Turn the web in on Day 3 of the project.  You will include your Text2MindMap in your Glog.

Day 3

Turn in your Activity 2 Part 1 and Part 2 assignments.  We will hold a class discussion about what you discovered.

Activity 2: Part 3 - How to Access a Stock Report (Quote) on the Internet

In this part of Activity 2, you will learn how to access stock reports (quotes) on the Internet and take a look at the line graphs created by the change in the stock's worth.

To begin, go to the following link http://finance.yahoo.com/.  On the left hand side of the page, there is a search box with the word "Quote" next to it.  In this box, you may type the name of a company or its ticker symbol (ex. "Sony" or just "SNE" for Sony).

Once you have entered the company name or ticker symbol in the "quote" search box, it will bring up the quote (stock report) for that company.  Along with the stock report, you will see a line graph. Please participate in the class discussion about line graphs.

You may also want to check out http://bigcharts.marketwatch.com.  Enter the name (or ticker symbol) of a company in the box next to the choices for the type of chart desired.  Click on the "Interactive Chart" option.  When the page opens notice that in the left-hand column you can change the type of chart as well as the timeframe of the information that is displayed.  Under the section labeled "Price Display," use the dropdown menu to choose "line chart."  If the chart doesn't change automatically, you may have to go up to the top of the left-hand column and click on "Draw Chart." Notice that a stock report appears on the top of the page as well.

Another option to look at is http://howthemarketworks.com.  Choose "live charts" from the left-hand side of the page.  From here, type the ticker symbol for the company next to the word "Symbol" and click "Get Chart."  When the chart appears, it probably won't appear as a line chart.  There is a dropdown menu that says "Chart Style."  From the list, choose "Line Chart".  The chart should reload as a line chart. Notice you can change the span of period of time that is charted.  Below the chart is an appreviated stock report for the stock.

Using either Yahoo! Finance, BigCharts, or howthestockmarketwords, look up a few more companies.  Choose one company's stock report to print out as well as the line graph associated with the company for the past 6 months. Either on the back of the line graph or on a separate sheet of paper, answer the following questions: 1) What is the name of the company?; 2) What is represented on the x-axis and y-axis; 3) According to what you see on the graph, how do you think the company has been doing overall for the past 6 months to a year? 4) Are there any major increases or decreases in the price of the company's stock? If so, when did they occur, and why might they have occurred? 

Activity 2: Part 3 is due on Day 4 of the project. 

Day 4

Turn in your assignment from Activity 2: Part 3. Participate in the vocabulary review game in class.  

Activity 3: Making a Wise Investment & When to Buy or Sell

For this part of your project, you will be on your own researching how to choose a company in which to make a wise investment and what do to with the stocks once you've got them.  Of course, you may research using the Internet or magazines, however, you will be required to interview either a professional in the investment field (i.e. a stockbroker) or someone who has investments and a good, solid understanding of the stock market.  This interview may be a video recording or just an audio recording.  It must be included on your Glog.  There are a lot of factors which affect the stock market and a company.  Thus, when you are interviewing your expert, you may want to ask which factors he or she think are most important when choosing a company in which to invest.  Experts may have varying beliefs about which factors are most important.  This doesn't necessarily mean that one expert's answer is better than another.  You will also need to include questions about how to know when it is best to buy or sell your shares rather than just leave them alone.  Again, there are a variety of factors that go into the decision making process so you will want to ask your expert what he or she believes to be the most important and why.

As a class, we will brainstorm some good questions to ask using WallWisher.  You must post at least one question on WallWisher.  For your interview, you must have at least five questions.  During the course of the interview, you will probably end up asking more questions than you originally planned which is great! Your list of planned interview questions must be turned in to me prior to your interview.

Once you have finished your research and interview, decide upon a company in which you would like to invest.  Write a brief summary about the company and why you chose this company.  Be sure to include the factors that contributed to your choice.  You may choose a company based upon the the information you gained from your research or simply because you like that company.  You will need to include this in your Glog as well.  It can be in document form, video form, or audio form. 

Remember, both the interview and the summary of your company must be included in some form in your Glog.

Activity 4: Investing and Following Your Investment

Now that you know which company in which you would like to invest, it is time to get invest in the stock market. Each team has a total of $100,000 dollars in which to invest between their companies.  Make sure that you know the ticker symbol for your companies. Together in class, we will go through the process of "buying" your shares.  Once your investments have been made, you will be required to check how your shares are doing once a week for the next four weeks. Of course, you are welcome to check more often that once a week, but will only be required to record information form the stock reports once a week.  Preferably, check your stock reports on the same day from week to week.   

Download the worksheet entitled "Activity 4: Keeping Track of My Stocks." We will begin filling out the worksheet together. Following along in class.

Now, you may choose to go to any of the following three links: http://finance.yahoo.com/, http://bigcharts.marketwatch.com, or http://bigcharts.marketwatch.com.  Enter the ticker symbol of your stock. On your worksheet, record the price of the stock.  Together, we will calculate how many shares you can purchase as well as the intial value of your shares. 

At the end of week 1, 2, 3, and 4, you will record the closing price of your stock and calculate the value of your shares.  You will also calculate the percent increase or decrease from the intial value of your shares at the date of purchase.  

As you go from week to week or at the end of week 4, using Microsoft Excel or some other graphing program, you will create a line chart that shows the value of your shares from your intial investment through the end of week 4.  Please make sure to title your chart, use a scale on the y-axis, and label the x and y-axes.  This line chart must be included in your Glog. 

The "Activity 4: Keeping Track of Your Stocks" worksheet as well a print out of your line chart are due in paper copy form on blah blah blah.

Finally Your Final Product

Finally, all of the leg work is finished! Now, you can focus on the really fun part - creating your Glog! Remember to refer to the Student Final Product Rubric and/or Checklist to make sure that you are including all of the necessary components in your Glog.  Your Glog is due blah blah blah.  









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