OACAC’s Youth-Centric Simulation


Did you know that a high school dropout will earn $1 million less than a college graduate over his or her lifetime, and $200,000 less than a high school graduate, according to the U.S. Census?

OACAC serves people from all walks of life, and we wanted to help our teenage community avoid the need for our assistance in the future. That’s why we developed the REALL project! Kids need to get real about their future and the expectations of life.

REALL is for grades 7th through 12th. It’s an active, hands-on experience that challenges teens to think critically about their lives through simulation of a reactive life and a proactive life.


Learn more about the Reality Enrichment And Life Lessons project, including how you can bring it to your school or group, how to volunteer, or how to purchase a REALL kit.

REALL Simulation: The Reactive Life

Participants must simulate the life of someone who has made negative decisions, such as legal trouble or inadequate education.

They may face a number of difficulties:

  • Difficulty finding and maintaining employment
  • Hardship affording bills and life expenses
  • Frustration
  • High stress
  • Strained relationships


The Proactive Life


Participants then simulate the life of someone who has made positive decisions, such as avoidance of legal issues and pursuit of higher education.

They may experience many benefits:

  • Living wage employment
  • Making enough income to afford housing
  • Making enough income to afford childcare
  • Money to enjoy hobbies and interests


The Debriefing


When finished simulating the two lives, students gather into small groups to reflect on the experience.

  • They are challenged to compare and contrast the two lives
  • Participants draw conclusions about how their present is an important piece of their future

Young participants are expected to pull from their REALL experiences to make proactive choices, so they may know self-sufficiency in adulthood.


REALL Simulation: Why Does It Work?

The 2009 OACAC Community Needs Assessment showed that poverty can be addressed by providing youth with a number of resources:

  • Development of life management skills
  • Programs for self-improvement
  • Increased services to prepare for life after school

And what are the results?

Beginning as a copyrighted project of OACAC, the REALL Simulation has now been adopted across Missouri and throughout the United States.

It provides an innovative method for teaching life lessons to young people and it benefits participating students.

Since the launch of REALL Simulation programs at the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year, Missouri’s graduation rate has improved from 81% to an all-time high of 87.3%

At OACAC, we believe that REALL, along with the dedication of educators across Missouri, has played a small role in this big success.

What are folks saying about REALL?


How to Experience REALL in Your Community

Are you interested in making a difference? Do you enjoy interacting with people? If so, OACAC has a volunteer opportunity for you!

The REALL simulation is designed to work in the many environments where teen populations gather together for hours of building, growing, and learning.

OACAC offers training opportunities for organizations who would like to add the REALL simulation to their selection of programs.

Contact our REALL Project Coordinators today to start the conversation!  Reach us at [email protected] or (417) 873-3370.

Resources for Teens, Parents, and Schools

If you, your teen, or your students have recently participated in a REALL simulation, we have resources for you. Click here to explore.


Upcoming REALL Simulations

Would you like to schedule a REALL Simulation for your school or youth organization? Please contact [email protected].

Please contact Holly Davis for information about scheduling a REALL simulation.[email protected]
(417) 873-3373


You can help teens make smart choices for a more successful future!


Your support lets more teens participate in this wonderful hands-on experience!