Frisco Elementary pilots a financial literacy program
Ryan Summerlin April 28, 2014
One hundred thousand dollars for “park swings,” $13 trillion for “cats” and one cent for a “rich gift.”
These are some of the checks fifth-graders at Frisco Elementary School wrote Friday, April 25, as part of a financial literacy program last week.
The program was put on by Youth Entity, a nonprofit that promotes life skills and career development for children ages 8 to 18, and was sponsored by Alpine Bank and the Rotary Club.
About 40 students in two classes showed off their math skills and impressed teachers with their questions.
Alpine Bank employees and Rotarians volunteered to teach students for an hour Monday through Thursday. They spent about three hours with the kids for the Friday finale, which included games and ended with each kid receiving a check: 50 cents for every right answer on the 30-question financial literacy test.
Youth Entity used money donated by the Rotary Club to write the checks.
Teachers and kids said they were having fun, said Kirsten McDaniel, Youth Entity’s executive director, which meant they were learning.
The kids will need this knowledge if they want to find summer jobs, said Katie Okes, 28, one of the two fifth-grade teachers who said she also learned a lot from the program.
Alpine Bank vice president Noel Hansen said she helped teach the kids about jobs and careers, wages and salaries, debit and credit cards, sales and incomes taxes, checking and saving accounts, wills and inheritance, assets and entrepreneurship.
With the 10-10-10-70 rule, the kids learned to save 10 percent of their money, invest 10 percent, donate or share 10 percent and spend 70 percent.
“I’m just really proud of the program,” Hansen said, which she hopes every school in Summit will implement.
A couple weeks ago, another local banker gave a finance talk to Summit students.
Peter Bullard, with Credit Union of the Rockies, said he planned a 45-minute after-school chat with about a dozen students in the SOS Outreach program, for at-risk youths.
Forty-five minutes turned into two hours. Bullard said he enjoyed chatting with the kids about credit and student loans. As someone who got his first credit card outside a Subway sandwich shop for a free footlong, he wanted to make sure the kids knew how the cards worked and how they can affect their futures.
That’s “something I don’t think a lot of youth is getting,” he said, especially when most parents are underinformed or misinformed.