Schoolchildren have learned how to get through the cost-of-living crisis in a competition staged at the ExCeL where 700 pupils from across London fought it out using their financial skills.

Some 100 schools took part working with their local education authorities like Newham Council to provide free teaching resources based around the Money Wise game.

“It is extremely important to teach children financial skills,” Newham’s mayor Rokhsana Fiaz said. “We’re committed to supporting families through the worst cost-of-living crisis in decades. The pursuit of financial literacy is key to this goal.”

Fifteen Newham schools have already integrated the Money Wise programme into their curriculum.

The competition was the brainchild of the ethical gaming Dot Dot Fire educational video developer that creates free games teaching life skills.

Only two out of every five young adults are financially literate, the company has found, with six out of 10 never having received financial education at school.

The e-game the company came up with simulates different decisions a teenager must make as they see how these play out, with the chance to analyse the consequences of their choices. 

Dot Dot Fire has also created a full Personal Finance curriculum with Newham Council, now used in 15 schools like St Antony’s Primary in Forest Gate, named the “primary school of the decade” by a national Sunday newspaper in 2021.

More schools are now using the free service to improve youngsters’ money skills.

The game is set in London in the future, where they have to defeat the Cost-of-Living Curse. Players interacted with the children to try and stop three ‘villains’ named Debt, Unemployment, and Inflation.

Two Newham schools came out on top — Stratford Manor Primary won first place in the years 5-6 age group and St Bonaventure’s won the years 7-9 prize.

Stratford Manor deputy headteacher Petra Collins said: “Financial education is essential since money is now so invisible, all on cards rather than hard cash in your hand.”

Playing the game teaches children how to manage their money and even help their mums and dads deal with the cost-of-living crisis and ease the squeeze.

The game is free to download on the App Store or Google Play and has already been downloaded half-a-million times globally.