Tapestry of Faith: The Wi$dom Path: An Adult Program on Money, Spirit, and Life

Activity 3: Names for Money

Part of The Wi$dom Path

Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Post a sheet of newsprint with the heading “Names for Money.”
  • If you are facilitating alone, ask a volunteer to serve as scribe.
  • Review Leader Resource 3, Some Names for Money.

Description of Activity

Introduce the activity, saying:

The language we use to talk about money reflects our assumptions and experience. Our language about money can influence the tone and direction of any conversation. Let’s begin by brainstorming all the terms we can think of for money.

Lead the brainstorm by going around the circle and inviting each participant to give one word for “money” (from proper English, slang English, or another language they use) while your co-facilitator or a scribe writes it on newsprint. Let people know it is fine to pass if they can’t think of a word. After two times around the circle, open it up for people to shout out words in any order (“popcorn” style). If the group has difficulty generating examples or has not included cultural variety in their brainstormed list, supplement with examples from Leader Resource 3, Some Names for Money, and then ask for additional words. After the ideas are exhausted, ask the group to take a minute to reflect on the range of expressions generated. Lead a reflection and discussion time. Allow a few responses to each question:

  • How do the different terms reflect different geographic or cultural places?
  • What metaphorical meanings do the different terms convey?
  • Do different terms carry different emotional force? Which ones are positive? Which feel negative to you?
  • Do some terms make you more comfortable or less so? Why?
  • What does this list say overall about our human relationship to money?