Education Technology

VIC: Finance Problems

by Craig Browne


This activity aims to create a greater understanding of the differences between simple and compound interest by providing powerful, interactive visuals, challenging questions and an engaging context: "Would you like to retire a millionaire?" Students also learn how to use spreadsheet formulas for recursion and modelling and compare these outcomes to basic formulas and the Finance Solver wizard. 


  • Recursion
  • Simple Interest
  • Compound Interest
  • Principal
  • Future Value
  • Payment
  • Linear and non-Linear

About the Lesson

This activity starts with a stimulus question, "How would you like to retire a millionaire?" The activity then proceeds to show how this can happen by saving as little as $60.00 per week, thanks to the cumulative effect of compounding interest. Linear simple interest calculations fall way short of the long term compounding interest. Initially students rely on the visuals and sliders to explore the differences in simple and compound interest, then they work with spreadsheets, formulas and finally the finance solver before pocketing their million dollar savings.