Teaching Strategies

/Teaching Strategies
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Question: What Financial Products Should A Young Person Use To Manage Their Money?

Hanging out on the Boglehead Forum today skimming the topics that have received the most replies. Forums seem so “old school” in this age of social networks (Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat) but the ones that have survived and thrived have done so for a reason. For those not familiar with the Boglehead Forum, the forum is named in honor of John Bogle, founder of Vanguard Investments, and attracts knowledgeable, thrifty investors passionate about sharing their knowledge in a variety of topics. Anytime I descend into the rabbit hole of a forum thread, I find myself wiser for the time invested. Students need to know where to go for reliable, credible sources for financial information.

I thought your students would benefit from this thread titled “College-bound teens and finances,” since it takes a holistic view on how to set up a young person for financial success from a parent’s perspective (other people’s parents which probably helps:) Here was the opening question on the thread: 

The D-Word: Differentiation!

Just a few weeks back, NGPF Fellow Maureen Neuner and I had a great phone conversation (we’re always saying — “Contact us! We love to help!” Maureen can attest it’s true) about the “D” word. DIFFERENTIATION! Love it or hate it, every good teacher’s got to do it, and Maureen and I were discussing specifically how to differentiate in the fin lit classroom.

I spent 4 years teaching algebra and geometry, often to students who really struggled with math, and then I spent another 6 years as a school admin in a school with tons of challenges, so differentiation was always a priority. Here are two ideas I’ve seen work in my own classroom:

  • Run 3 table groups simultaneously, with an appropriately leveled activity at each one. The key: Each activity enforces the same learning concepts
    • As the teacher, start off sitting with the most struggling group so that you can model as needed and give no one the excuse of not working at all “because I don’t understand.”
    • Move on to the middle group to make sure they’re not stuck and struggling too much, and help them with trickier aspects of the activity, or use your time with them to review
By |March 21st, 2017|Teaching Strategies, Tips for Teachers|

Just Say No To Overdraft Protection!

It’s a $33 billion error that consumers continue to make. From Wall Street Journal:

Banks and other financial firms in 2016 generated the highest level of fees in seven years related to overdrafts on checking accounts, marking a turnaround for a charge crisis-era regulation tried to rein in.

So-called overdraft fees totaled $33.3 billion in 2016, up about 2.5% from 2015 and by 5.4% from 2011, according to Moebs Services Inc., an economic-research firm. Overdrafts occur when consumers make transactions that are larger than their checking-account balance.

Try this tomorrow in your class:

Thirty (30!) Spanish Activities Now Available

In case you missed it in January, NGPF has heard the call, and we’re beginning to translate our original activities and projects into Spanish for use with your English Language Learners. Don’t worry — we’re not relying on my own poor command of the Spanish language (muy malo) — we’ve hired an awesome translator who is working through our resources in batches of 10. With two batches now complete, we’ve got 30 activities/projects across Checking, Saving, Budgeting, Types of Credit, Managing Credit, and Investing, ready for use!

How to access the Spanish translations (3 methods):

  1. Bookmark this directory page for links directly to the Spanish and corresponding English versions of the Google docs
  2. On our website, look for activities and projects with (Sp) following their title — that denotes the resource is available in Spanish  Spanish screenshot
  3. On individual activities or projects, look for the words Spanish Version under the header and click to open the translation.   Spanish version

 

Are Spanish translations going to be a game changer in your classroom? Can you just not wait for us to release more?

New Curriculum: Our 8-Hour Workshop!

Asked to teach a 7-hour course at Castilleja School in Palo Alto, we polled the seniors at this high performing all-girls school to find out what personal finance topics they most wanted to learn, and they came back with:

  • How to budget during college and/or grad school
  • Understanding how credit cards and loans work
  • Buying a car
  • And how to invest

We rounded out their 5-class course with an hour on credit scores and, after working with the students, realized they also had a lot of questions about taxes. So, we turned our awesome Casti course into an 8-Hour Workshop to share with you.

Here are a few quick reasons I love this workshop:

  • It’s perfect if you don’t have a full semester course on Personal Finance. You can use part or all of the 8 hours in a senior seminar, an advisory, an after-school program, an intersession course, etc. Or, the individual lessons may be JUST what you’re looking to add into your full Fin Lit course.
  • It inspired us to create two new activities:
    • A whole-class, up-out-of-your-seats way to teach mutual and index funds (thanks, NGPF Fellow Andrea Stemper for the inspiration)
    • A new spin on our
By |March 6th, 2017|New Products, Personal Finance, Teaching Strategies|

The Money Question: Do You Want Overdraft Protection?

Thanks to Mountain View High for inviting me to their AVID class last week (and for the next 7 Thursdays) to teach personal finance. Today’s topic was “How To Manage Your Checking Account.” I started with the Bank role play activity to highlight the questions that students should be prepared to ask PRIOR to opening an account. Asking the right questions has to be the foundational skill we need to develop in any financial education course.

The students responses included the importance of FEES with several discussing the pain that they felt when overdraft fees hit their account. During the role play, I asked the “money question” that all new accountholders will be asked when opening an account: “Would you like overdraft protection?” 

Activity Idea: Write a Column About Money To Help Your Peers

This St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporter, Jim Gallagher, wrote his final column recently. After twenty three years of being on the personal finance beat, he left a gift to his readers by reflecting on all that he had learned. I thought this would be a great activity for educators who are constantly on the prowl for writing assignment ideas. Why not as a final project have your students write a personal finance column highlighting all that they had learned. In terms of structure, here are some additional ideas:

Snapchat Is Going Public. Would You Buy Their IPO?

First an admission. I have never used Snapchat. Despite that, I thought their upcoming IPO would be a good hook to get students interested in how the stock market works. Before diving into the specifics of Snapchat (actually it is their parent company, SNAP, who is going public), here’s a good video from Wall Street Survivor that explains what an IPO is:

Questions: