top of page


This unit is designed to help you develop understanding about positive budgeting, savings, and spending habits. Through practical scenarios, you will learn to create monthly budgets and savings plans.

Wants vs. Needs

Lesson Explanation


Duration  10-30 minutes

Lesson Overview

In this lesson, students will develop an understanding about wants vs. needs, and learn how to differentiate between wants and needs when making purchases.

Big Idea

There are different types of expenses that impact ones short- and long-term finances. Your purchases and expense decisions impact your budget.

Essential Questions

At the end of the lesson, your students should be able to answer the following:

What is a want?

What is a need?

What are some differences between wants and needs?

Why is it important to recognize the differences between wants and needs?


Students will understand the difference between a want and a need. They will apply this understanding to determine wants from needs

when making purchases.




Money management

Although it may seem trivial, mapping concrete examples of each will help you navigate through your own emotions when making purchasing decisions.

We need to understand how our money is spent. The first step is to understand the difference between a “need” and a “want.”

• A need is something you must have for survival — something you can’t live without. Food, shelter, and clothing are examples of needs.

• A want is something you would like to have — something not absolutely necessary for your survival but that you would enjoy having. Examples of wants include iPods, designer clothes,vacations, Xbox players, or Michael Kors watches.

Good money management involves having enough money to cover all your “needs,” while purchasing “wants” only when you have extra money to do so.

bottom of page