Developing a Budget

In the weeks prior to the start of the unit, students track their expenditures during a two-week period. In class, students create a group presentation about personal and financial goals. Individually, students identify four personal goals and describe the related financial goals. With financial goals in mind, students work in pairs to complete a budget analysis for a fictitious high school senior who needs to save money for prom. The lesson concludes with a personal budget development activity that uses the information on expenditures that was collected during the two-week data gathering period.


  • Analyze personal goals to determine related and necessary financial goals.
  • Devise personal goals for a variety of time frames and develop related financial goals.
  • Gather data and use it to analyze personal spending.
  • Develop a budget that allows personal saving.

Grade Level

High School – College

Time Required

Two weeks of data collection outside of class (time frame for data collection can be modified as appropriate). One 50-minute class period.


  • SmartBoard (optional) If using a computer and projector please click when procedure says touch
  • Interactive PDF file Ƀ Copies of Handout 1: Tracking Your Expenses
  • Copies of Handout 2: Where Am I Going? A Goal-Setting Exercise
  • Copies of Handout 3: Budget Worksheet

National Standards in K–12 Personal Finance Education

  • Financial Responsibility and Decision-making
  • Standard 4: Make financial decisions by systematically considering alternatives and consequences.
  • Planning and Money Management
  • Standard 1: Develop a plan for spending and saving

Procedure Document

Procedure Document

Get Lesson


For additional related lessons, explore our main category pages:

Categories Budgeting, Tags , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *