April is Financial Literacy Month
Citizens must be familiar with financial terms, systems and
models in order to be competent voters and engaged citizens. As
taxpayers, members of political parties, voters and donators to civic
and social causes, Americans need to understand the systems that are in
play within our democratic society. We have compiled a few resources to
help teachers observe Financial Literacy Month in the classroom. Many of
these topics are cross-curricular and most of the links below can be
adapted to any grade level.
Budgeting means keeping track of how money is earned and spent. The
federal government is responsible for keeping our nation's finances.
Here, you'll learn about the choices involved in maintaining the federal
budget. Also, you'll find out what happens when the U.S. government has
to borrow money to keep things running.
New York News Publishers Newspaper in Education
By the Numbers: Mathematical Connections in Newspapers for middle-grade
students focused on Financial Literacy. Download free teaching guide
that uses the everyday activities of cooking, travel, working, shopping
and moving from place to place. (49 pages - including many student
worksheets NAA Foundation, 2006)
Representative Democracy in America/Center on Congress
Developed for students as well as the general public, these interactive
learning activities are designed to give you a fresh perspective on how
the United States Congress works, citizens' role in the process,
and peoples' perceptions about Congress. One of Congress' major
responsibilities is providing funds for federal programs. This activity
allows students to try allocating the federal budget. How much
money is allocated to categories such as defense, welfare, and the
environment. Decide how the budget should be allocated, and then
compare spending priorities.
w!se Financial Literacy Certification Program
Young adults under 25 are now the fastest-growing age group filing
bankruptcies, but less than 10 percent of high school students take any
courses on money management or wealth creation before they graduate.
w!se’s Financial Literacy Certification Program addresses this
problem. The program provides instructional support to high school
teachers of personal finance and the opportunity, through the national
standardized w!se Financial Literacy Certification Test for students to
become Certified Financially Literate™ (CFL). Registration is
underway for the spring 2012 Certification Test; please contact Andrea
Campbell firstname.lastname@example.org for more
Learning to Give
Learning to Give educates youth about the importance of philanthropy,
the civil society sector, and civic engagement. Site offers over 1,600
K-12 lessons and educational resources for teachers, parents, youth
workers, faith groups and community leaders free of charge.
The Federal Trade Commission
The site is intended for students in 5th through 8th grade and can be
used to complement lessons in critical thinking, writing, language arts,
media literacy, business, civics, and social studies.
Students can play games, design ads, chat with customers and store
owners, and more. Learn key consumer concepts, such as how advertising
affects consumers, how consumers benefit when businesses compete,
how (and why) to protect personal information and how to spot
U.S. Treasury/Education Departments
The U.S. Department of the Treasury, in conjunction with the U.S.
Department of Education, has developed an Educator Toolkit. From saving
for college to managing expenses like cell phones, the site helps
students learn about a wide array of topics that together constitute a
basic understanding of personal finance.
United States Mint
The United States Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change™ website and its
educators pages help enrich students' education through coins.
Since 1999, these sections of usmint.gov have been dedicated to finding
ways to use coins to connect students with history and culture. By
combining government, technology, and education, this online
cross-curricular resource helps teach about coins. Find information and
teaching tools, including teacher-created lesson plans, classroom ideas,
Find resources, activities and lesson plans to help young adults
overcome financial challenges and learn money basics. Facilitator's
Guide provides activities and the Young Money Magazine: Special Edition
Guide for Your Life, Your Money features stories and helpful tips
written for young adults.
PBS Now Classroom - Campaign Financing
The money that finances a political campaign has tremendous influence on
who runs for office, how that person campaigns, and if elected, on how
that person prioritizes constituent interests. This site offers a lesson
plan, resources, materials and discussion points for the classroom.
PBS News Hour
Super PACs are controversial new political organizations that are able
to use an unlimited amount of money to back a certain candidate without
officially being linked to the campaign. PBS has posted lesson plan with
Great American Financial Resources, Inc. has partnered with USA TODAY to
create Money Matters 101, a series of free lesson plans for educators to
use in the classroom. Each of these lessons online for unlimited use and
discussion in the classroom.
Federal Reserve introduces students and educators to the wide variety of
instructional resources available through the Federal Reserve Education
website and the new FED 101 website. The website provides links to
instructional materials and tools that can increase student
understanding of the Federal Reserve, economics and financial education.
All of the Fed websites, curriculum, newsletters, booklets and other
resources are free.
Whether you teach fourth-grade social studies or high school economics,
here you can find resources to plan a money-management class. From
downloadable lesson plans that take up one class period to online games
that teach key concepts, Edutopia has resources broken down by grade
Founded in 1999, BrainPOP creates animated, curriculum-based content
that engages students, supports educators, and bolsters achievement.
Special section on financial literacy. Some resources free, others by
Verizon Foundation's Thinkfinity
Thinkfinity.org’s special collection of finance-related lesson
plans, interactives, primary sources, podcasts and activities.