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Karma Tycoon Video Game Study Guide Unit Vocabulary


Language Arts, Math, Social Studies  


7, 8, 9, 10  

Title – Karma Tycoon Video Game Study Guide Unit

Primary Subject – Social Studies
Secondary Subjects – Language Arts, Math
Grade Level – 7-12

6) Vocabulary

Grades 7-10

Karma Tycoon rocks the gaming world by offering you a thrilling ride through the world of social entrepreneurship as you earn Karma in virtual communities across the US.


  2. ABOUT US:
    • Nonprofit Terms
    • “Learn” Sections from Karma Tycoon Video Game for Grants, Foundations, Balance Sheets, Credit Cards, and Loans


    • Cities
    • Types of Nonprofits
    • What Is a Nonprofit Organization?
    • City and Nonprofit Internet Learning Hunt
    • The Importance of Managing Your Finances
    • Devising a Budget for Your Nonprofit


    To access these unit chapters, click on their titles above.

6)  Karma Tycoon     Vocabulary a. Nonprofit TermsKARMAKarma is the consequence of choice, the sum of all that an individual has done, is currently doing, and will do.TYCOONA tycoon is a person who has reached a prominent place in a particular industry and whose wealth has been derived from the business. A tycoon is also referred to as a business magnate, mogul, or industrialist.NONPROFITNonprofit is a term that describes the Internal Revenue Service’s designation of an organization whose income is not used for the benefit or private gain of stockholders, directors, or anyone with an interest in the company. The centers you create in Karma Tycoon are nonprofit organizations. There are separate tax breaks available for nonprofit organizations based on whether or not they are charitable. They are also eligible for grants and other donations as a way to raise money.501(C)3 ORGANIZATIONA 501(C)3 organization is a nonprofit that has applied to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and been designated as charitable and tax exempt. Organizations that qualify under the 501(c)3 section of the Internal Revenue code may include religious, educational, supportive, amateur athletic, or other organizations or services involved in the prevention of cruelty to animals. If granted a 501(c)3 designation, all income generated by a nonprofit organization is used solely to support its operations and mission.TAX EXEMPTAn organization that is tax exempt does not have to pay state and/or federal income taxes and in some instances, may also be exempt from sales and local property tax.IN-KIND CONTRIBUTIONAn in-kind contribution is a donation of goods or services rather than cash or property (e.g. donated equipment and/or volunteering time).MISSION STATEMENTA mission statement is a clear and succinct representation of the purpose of a business. The statement addresses concepts such as the moral/ethical position of the business, public image, target market, products/services, geographic domain, and expectations of growth and profitability.ENTREPRENEURAn entrepreneur is a person who starts a business.SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURA social entrepreneur is a person who engages in social entrepreneurship, is an ethical businessperson, addresses social issues, recognizes and solves social problems, operates in the nonprofit sector, and builds social capital in communities creating value.b. “Learn” Sections from Karma Tycoon Video Game for
Grants, Foundations, Balance Sheets, Credit Cards, and Loans
GRANTSA grant is an award of money to an organization (or individual) to carry out charitable activities. Foundations (or grantors) offer grants, usually on a competitive basis, which provide income for your center. Grants are gifts to the organization, which you are not required to pay back and are essential to the functioning of nonprofits. Throughout the game, you will apply for grants in order to increase your income and in turn, provide additional services for the centers you open. For each grant or donation you receive, your balance will increase by the amount donated. Foundations offer different types of grants, each with their own requirements and guidelines.Types of Grants Available to Nonprofits:

  • Operating support: A grant given to fund an organization’s day-to-day, ongoing expenses, such as salaries, utilities or office supplies. A grant is made to further the mission of an organization rather than for a specific program or project (also called general operating support or unrestricted grant).
  • Restricted grant: A grant that has some restrictions on how it is applied within the nonprofit organization. For example, a grantor may make a contribution that must be applied only to a specific program and may not be applied toward general operating expenses.
  • Seed money: A grant used to start a new project or organization. The first grant you receive in Karma Tycoon from the JPMorgan Chase Foundation is considered seed money for general operating support.

GranteeA grantee is an individual or organization that receives a grant.GrantorA grantor is a person or organization that gives a grant to a nonprofit organization.ApprovalAn approval is the acceptance of a grant request. When a nonprofit is notified that they have received approval for a grant, the notice usually includes the amount of the grant and the term, or length of time the grant is good for.Declination A declination is the rejection of a grant request, also referred to as a denial.FOUNDATIONS A foundation is a non-governmental, nonprofit organization that has its own funds or endowments and makes grants to organizations. A foundation usually solicits grant proposals and selects grantees based on its funding priorities and policies. Foundations are managed by their trustees or directors and are usually founded to benefit educational, charitable, social, religious, or other activities serving the common good. There are many types of foundations including:

  • community foundations,
  • corporate foundations,
  • family foundations,
  • operating foundations,
  • public foundations, and
  • private independent foundations.

Corporate FoundationsA corporate (or company-sponsored) foundation is a private foundation that gets its grant funding primarily from the contributions of a for-profit businesses. The company-sponsored foundation is often closely associated with the company that funds it, but the foundation is a separate, legal organization and is subject to the same rules and regulations as other private foundations.BALANCE SHEETS Within Karma Tycoon, you will find all of your financial activities on your balance sheet. A balance sheet provides an up-to-the-minute record of your business’s finances. For each center you open, you can expect to pay monthly expenses for payroll, rent, utilities and supplies. You will also be charged a startup expense of $5,000 for each center opened. This reflects typical costs for opening a nonprofit center. If you have used your credit card to purchase items for the center, you will also see your CC (credit card) payment amount. If you took out a loan, the loan payment will also be listed as part of your monthly expenses. All expenses will be automatically paid at the beginning of the month and the amount will be deducted from your balance. To help you manage the financial health of your nonprofit, you can find the amount of money you have on hand in your balance. This amount will increase when you receive grants and donations, and when you take out loans. Your balance will decrease when you pay monthly expenses, purchase items for your center, or pay off loans. The debt amount reflects the use of your credit card and/or outstanding loans, and the monthly expenses reflects the total cost to run your center(s) and the amount of money deducted each month.PayrollPayroll refers to the total sum of money paid to your employees at a given time (typically, every two weeks, but employees in Karma Tycoon are paid on a monthly basis).Rent Rent is the monthly payment made by a tenant to a landlord in return for the use of land, a building, or an office.UtilitiesUtilities are commodities or services, such as electricity, water, etc., and are often paid on a monthly basis.SuppliesSupplies refer to the charges made to purchase typical business supplies (e.g. pens, paper, printer supplies, etc.) and/or specific supplies needed to run your business (i.e. beds for homeless shelters, food for animals, etc).Credit Card PaymentThe credit card payment reflects the minimum amount due each month to your credit card company. You can and should pay more than the minimum amount due each month.Loan PaymentBased on the loan amount borrowed, a loan payment reflects the minimum monthly amount due to a lender in order to repay the loan. The borrower can pay more than the minimum, and it’s smarter to pay more. Usually, there is a predetermined time for repaying a loan, but the lender must bear the risk that the borrower may not repay a loan.Available CreditAvailable credit reflects funds available to you from your credit card line or loan. For example, if you have a $20,000 line of credit and only use $5,000, you still have an available credit of $15,000.CREDIT CARDSIn each game, you will be given a credit card to use as an additional source of working capital. While you aren’t permitted to pay off your monthly expenses using your credit card, you may use it to purchase and furnish your center so that you can help more people. Unlike grants, however, credit cards are similar to loans; you must to pay back what you borrow. Your monthly expenses will automatically include the minimum credit card payment due, but you may make payments at any time, for any amount, to reduce the balance owed. As you pay off your credit card debt, you also replenish your credit line. This increases your ability to offer additional services.Credit Line

    Also known as a credit limit, a credit line is the maximum amount you can borrow using your credit card. The credit line remains available to the extent that charges are repaid. In the real world, a credit line often depends upon your income or ability to repay the loan, as well as your prior credit card use (also known as your credit history). If you are new to credit, banks typically offer a low line of credit to allow you to begin developing a credit history.

It’s up to you to set your own budget and stick to it. For example, if you’ve determined that you only need to use 20% of your credit line each month, manage your credit card spending to this level. Hypothetically, you would then have the remaining 80% to fall back on if you find yourself in a bind and need access to additional funding on an emergency basis.Finance ChargeA finance charge is the cost of credit expressed as a dollar amount. A finance charge may be comprised of fees and an annual percentage rate.Outstanding BalanceAn outstanding balance is the total amount owed, which is reflected in Karma Tycoon within the “current balance” field on your balance sheet. This amount will decrease as you make payments, and increase as you accrue finance charges or other fees, such as late charges that may be assessed for paying late bills.Minimum Payment(same as Credit Card Payment)A minimum payment refers to the minimum amount you must pay by the payment due date indicated on your monthly bill, in order to keep your account in good standing. This is often referred to as keeping your account current. How you use and repay your credit card debt paints a partial picture for your creditors as to how trustworthy you are in repaying your debt. This history enables your bank and other creditors to make future decisions on whether they will offer you additional credit, as well as the terms of that credit, including the associated interest rates and fees.Credit Card AccountA credit card account is a form of revolving debt issued by banks or other lenders (creditors) to applicants who are at least eigteen years old, and is generally accessed by a plastic card. Typically, these accounts are not secured by property, such as a car or house. Through this mechanism, banks allow customers to borrow up to a maximum amount (or credit line).APR (Annual Percentage Rate)An annual percentage rate is the cost of your credit on an annual basis. It refers to the cost of borrowing money and carrying an outstanding monthly balance.Payment Due DateThe payment due date is when your minimum payment must be received by the bank in order to keep your account current. As you use and repay your debts on time, banks may lend you more money by increasing your credit line, assuming that you also have sufficient income to repay your debt. The reverse is also true: if you don’t pay your bill on time or don’t pay it at all, banks may penalize you according to contract terms by (1) increasing the interest rate they charge on your outstanding credit card debt, and/or (2) reducing or revoking your credit line.LOAN

    A loan is an arrangement in which a lender gives money or property to a borrower, and the borrower agrees to return the property or repay the money-usually along with interest-at a future point in time. Usually, there is a predetermined time for repaying a loan, but the lender must bear the risk that the borrower may not repay a loan.

Whether you need additional funds to cover expenses, expand your centers or open new ones, in addition to applying for grants, you may apply for one of four, fixed-rate loans. Select the amount you need, ranging from $5,000 to $20,000. If the bank approves your loan request, you will be given the full amount and will then be responsible for paying it back. If you have taken out any loans, the minimum amount due per month will be reflected in your balance sheet. Also, if you receive several grants, think about paying off your loans quickly so you are not carrying a surplus of debt. You can always re-apply for a loan if you need to.Interest RateThe cost you are being charged on money borrowed. A fixed interest rate stays the same over time. An adjustable rate gives you a lower starting monthly payment and can save you thousands of dollars over time.Monthly PaymentA monthly payment refers to the minimum amount due each month to keep your account in good standing.Balance A balance is the current outstanding total on your account. This amount will change as you start to pay back your loan.Amortization Schedule An amortization schedule is a schedule of payments for paying off a loan.CollateralCollateral is an asset that is accepted as security for a loan or other obligation.Credit RatingA credit rating is an evaluation of a borrower’s ability to meet financial obligations. Not paying off your loans or credit card bills on time will negatively affect your credit rating.Secured LoanA secured loan is one where an asset (collateral) is taken and its value is secured by the loan. If you default (fail to pay on time and meet the terms and conditions on the loan), the collateral is taken by the bank. Interest rates for secured loans are generally lower, the terms may be longer, and the bank may be more flexible in extending this type of loan to someone with a negative credit history.Unsecured Loan An unsecured loan is one where no collateral is taken, therefore the rates are typically higher and the term is shorter. In order to obtain an unsecured loan, you must have good credit.



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