A teacher has divided TikTok after sharing his financial literacy teaching methods – which include encouraging his students to ‘pay’ for their desks.
In a viral video that has racked a staggering 2.8 million views, Mr Vuong (@teamvuong) explained that his students earn “brain bucks” (fake paper cheques) for attendance and “being responsible” in a bid to teach them about budgeting and capitalism in the classroom.
He said, “And on the last Friday of the month? Gotta pay rent”, before explaining that each desk costs 15 brain bucks per month. Students also have the chance to pay 75 brain bucks to “pay off” their rent for the year.
“It’s really interesting to see which kids have delayed or instant gratification and see how they budget their money”, the teacher added.
The students can spend the remaining fake money on prizes through an online ordering portal – tax excluded.
Mr Vuong’s innovative teaching method has divided the platform, with over 12K comments.
Supporters of the scheme back the teacher: “This type of teaching is needed. Y’all complain about anything.” Another suggested that the anger is deflected in the wrong direction, “It’s amazing that people are mad at him... And not capitalism.”
Another highlighted: “Y’all: ‘Why don’t we learn about financial literacy in school?’
“Also y’all: ‘How dare he teach basic financial literacy?’”
Others, however, expressed their dismay at the practice. “I understand budget management, but do it as a unit, not class management”, one commented.
Another said they “didn’t like this at all –
“Why would you try and replicate capitalism in the classroom? What happens if they can’t make rent?” They added.
In response to those asking whether students had their desks taken off them if they couldn’t afford rent, the teacher said: “And shame kids? Never! I accommodate and prioritize their needs.”