Financial education is an integral part of Arsenal Credit Union’s mission, and one of the ways in which the credit union demonstrates its commitment to this is by having an employee visit middle school and elementary school classrooms and give free presentations on a wide array of financial subjects.
“Not only do our presentations include discussions and in- class activities, but we also have resources that kids can share with their parents,” said Jenny Remes, marketing coordinator at Arsenal. Remes just completed teaching an eight-week course at an Arnold middle school utilizing materials from the Biz Kid$ program and a five-week course to three different elementary classes in Arnold using Junior Achievement materials. “We like to introduce the topics in a fun way.”
Biz Kid$ teaches financial concepts and entrepreneurship to a preteen/teen audience; sketch comedy and young actors are used in the national public television series to explain basic economic concepts. Free classroom curriculum, outreach activities, a website and a monthly online newsletter are all part of this financial literacy initiative. Biz Kid$ was completely funded by credit unions. Arsenal financially supported the program from 2006-2010.
Among the many Biz Kid$ topics used in classroom presentations are Saving and Investing for Your Future, Using Your Credit, Budgeting Basics, How to Achieve your Financial Goals, Understanding Business Ethics, Don’t Blow your Dough, and Introducing Entrepreneurs. The first DVD series from Season 1 alone has 26 different topics.
The Junior Achievement course enriches the students’ social studies curriculum, and includes business, economy, needs and wants, goods and services and resources.
Remes has also used Biz Kid$ materials to teach 50 students at a middle school in Imperial and 24 Boy Scouts from a local troop, and makes customized financial presentations at an annual summer school program.