Mission Fed JA Finance Park® Blended Model

Mission Fed JA Finance Park curriculum cover

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Mission Fed JA Finance Park
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JA Finance Park helps students build a foundation upon which they can make intelligent financial decisions that last a lifetime, including decisions related to income, expenses, savings, and credit.
The JA Finance Park program is composed of 6 to 13 teacher-taught, in-class lessons. The program culminates with a hands-on experiential learning budgeting simulation at the JA campus in Mission Valley San Diego. Additional extension activities are available for each theme: Income, Savings Insurance and Risk Management, Credit and Debit, and Budgeting. Lesson differentiation includes traditional implementation, project based learning (PBL) implementation, and simulation only options that can be utilized in a middle thru high school classrooms and afterschool settings.

Pillars of Student Success Entrepreneurship:
Minimal
Financial Literacy:
High
Work Readiness:
High
Program Implementation Program Grade-Level
JA-Capstone Grades 6-12
Program Concepts Program Skills

Program Sessions

Income

Students recognize the fundamental role of income in managing their personal finances and the factors that affect income and take-home pay. Students begin to understand that the decisions they make about education and career will have an impact on their potential income and quality of life.

Option One - Traditional Lesson Format - Three (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: Plan Your Future
Students will make the distinction between abilities, aptitudes, interests, work preferences, and values. They will explore various sources of income, including salaries and wages, interest, and business profit.

• Lesson Two: Careers
Students identify their career interests and goals as a way to earn future income. They set a career goal they will revisit at the end of the program.

• Lesson Three: Taxes and My Income
Students learn the three main sources of government's tax on income and determine net monthly income by deducting federal income tax, Social Security, and Medicare deductions.

Option Two - Project-Based Learning Lesson Format - Four (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: My Life: Got Skills?
Students will rate their interests, abilities, and values. They will determine work preferences and match them to career options.

• Lesson Two: My Life: College or Not?
Students explore how their decisions about education and career have an impact on their income potential and quality of life.

• Lesson Three: My Life: Where's All My Money? (Part One)
Students are introduced to the concept of taxes, why they are paid, and their impact on income. They will determine net monthly income.

• Lesson Four: My Life: Where's All My Money? (Part Two)
Working in teams, students debate the use of tax dollars and how they are distributed.



Saving, Investing and Risk Management

Students explore saving and compare investments as a part of their overall financial planning. They also examine risk and how insurance may help protect savings.

Option One - Traditional Lesson Format - Two (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: Saving and Investing
Students are introduced to various short- and long-term saving and investment options such as savings accounts, stocks, and mutual funds.

• Lesson Two: Managing Risk
Students recognize that insurance policies are a common way to minimize risk for accidents and unforeseen circumstances.

Option Two - Project-Based Learning Format - Two (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: My Life–Pay Myself First?
Students examine how they can benefit from paying themselves first. They compare the impact that money, time, interest rates, and inflation have on the growth of their investment.

• Lesson Two: My Life–Insurance Too?
Students recognize that insurance policies safeguard against risk by providing compensation in the event of sickness, injury, accidents, or other insured circumstances.



Debit and Credit

Students compare financial institutions and their services. Through discussion and a game activity they also weigh the advantages and disadvantages of debit and credit. Lastly, students examine the role of credit scores and credit reporting have on personal finances.

Option One: Traditional Lesson Format - Four (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: Banking Partners
Students identify the types of financial institutions and the services they provide.
• Lesson Two: Personal Spending
Students become aware of the advantages and disadvantages of debit and credit cards.
• Lesson Three: Savvy Shopping
Students participate in the Savvy Shopper game and see first-hand the costs and benefits of debit and credit.
• Lesson Four: Managing Credit
Students explore credit reports and credit scores, discover why they are important, and learn how to build good credit.

Option Two - Project-Based Learning Format - Three (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: My Life–Financial Institutions
Students identify the various types of financial institutions and the services they provide.
• Lesson Two: My Life–The Cost of Credit
Students explain the use of debit and credit cards and their advantages and disadvantages.
• Lesson Three: My Life–My Credit Score
Students understand what a credit score is, why it is important, and how to build good credit.



Budget

Students discover the importance of spending money wisely and recognize a budget as a valuable tool. They create personal budgets based on saving and lifestyle goals and day-to-day situations.

Option One - Traditional Lesson Format - Three (Required) 45-Minute Lessons

• Lesson One: Think Before You Spend
Students define what good money management is and why it is important. They discuss how setting financial goals and being an informed consumer will help them better manage their money.
• Lesson Two: What is a Budget?
Students identify the components of a successful budget.
• Lesson Three: Who Uses a Budget?
Students practice budgeting and learn how this tool can help them responsibly manage their daily finances.

Option Two - Project-Based Learning Format - Three (Required) 45-Minute Lessons & Project Preparation

• Lesson One: My Life - "Riches to Rags" . . . Not Me!
Students explore common reasons why people run into financial difficulty, including unemployment, medical bills, overextended credit, and poor decision making.
• Lesson Two: My Life: Income - Expenses = Reality
Students identify the components of a successful budget and distinguish between different kinds of budgets.
• Lesson Three: My Life – In Control of My Money
Students will make choices and discover how to maintain a budget. They will prepare a budget based on goals and income.
• Culminating Project Preparation: Two class sessions or homework
Using the knowledge and skills gained from the JA Finance Park curriculum, students create a portfolio and presentation describing their education path, career path, savings goals, risk management strategy, or budget plan.



The Simulation and Debriefing

Simulation (applies to both Traditional and Project Based Learning Lesson Formats)
Students experience the JA Finance Park simulation, where they apply classroom learning by creating a family budget based on a hypothetical life situation. Students recognize the impact of credit history on budget planning and purchasing options.

Option One: Traditional Lesson Format

• Debriefing
During the debriefing, students revisit their career goals to see how the JA Finance Park experience may have changed their goals or plans for the future.

Option Two: Project-Based Learning Format

• My Life Presentation
Students present their insights and knowledge related to one of the four JA Finance Park curriculum sections.



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