Money Smart Week is a public awareness campaign designed to help consumers better manage their personal finances. This is achieved through the collaboration and coordinated effort of organizations across the state including businesses, financial institutions, schools, libraries, not-for-profits, government agencies and media. These groups come together once a year to stress the importance of financial literacy, inform consumers where they can get help, and provide free educational seminars and activities throughout the week. Programming is offered to all demographics and income levels and covers all facets of personal finance from establishing a budget to first time home buying to estate planning.
How can I get involved as a school?
Participating in Money Smart Week is not difficult or time consuming. It is an opportunity for your school or class to learn the importance of financial education. Include a personal finance lesson that week or read tips on saving money in the daily announcements. Take advantage of the Money Smart Nebraska Week’s free resources to help teach students about money, banking and personal finance. As an educator, you have the opportunity to give students the tools and inspiration for a successful financial future.
A great way to learn about the campaign is to review what happened during Money Smart Nebraska Week 2010. The annual report (available at www.MoneySmartNebraska.org) provides a comprehensive overview of the week. It includes information on events and resources, a map of cities participating in Money Smart Week, a recap of media coverage and a complete list of all participating organizations.
The following pages provide information about ideas for events, Money Smart Nebraska promotions, how to include an event and the types of resources available to you as a Money Smart Nebraska participant.
I’d like to get involved with Money Smart Week. What can I do?
Those interested in the cause of financial literacy are welcome to join us! Those involved with Money Smart Nebraska typically do one or more of the following:
Provide educational materials, instructors or a seminar for consumers
Provide facilities to host events, sponsor events or promotional materials
Leverage resources to publicly support or endorse Money Smart Week
Participants post their events for free to an online database of events. In addition, they receive access to a wide range of materials to help promote their events.
Identify your target audience (i.e. seniors, women, unbanked, youth). Consider audiences your organization may already have a relationship with.
Select a topic, secure a venue and select a presenter/speaker.
Remember: All workshops, seminars and activities must be educational in nature and relate to improving knowledge of personal finances, from basic savings tips to advanced money management strategies. Sales pitches and/or commercial marketing are strictly prohibited.
Most workshops, seminars and activities should be free and open to the public. Private events may be included for appropriate audiences such as students, employees and professional groups.
Add Your Events.
Submit your Money Smart Week event information by clicking on “Add an Event” at www.MoneySmartNebraska.org.
Market and Promote.
Get the word out about your event to get the attendance you want. Use some of the free resources online at www.MoneySmartNebraska.org as promotional tools. Think about traditional and social media, websites, flyers, email blasts, news releases, etc.
Use the free printed promotional cards for the week available to you from the Nebraska Financial Education Coalition to help share information about the week and your events.
Have Your Event.
Conduct your event for your target audiences. Have fun, and remember that financial literacy is essential for all Nebraskans.
We need your help to measure the success of Money Smart Nebraska. Complete and return the information we’ll request - attendance numbers, surveys, photos, media clips and samples of promotional materials.
Best Practices for Hosting and Promoting Events
The easiest way to get involved is the incorporate Money Smart Week into the classroom or a student organization like FBLA, DECA, business or personal finance class. Here are some additional ideas:
Pie the principal for personal finance participation
Student to student - financial literacy presentations
Teach Children to Save Day
Business career day
Creative Ways to Promote Money Smart Nebraska Week
Even if you do not hold an event, you can be a part of Money Smart Nebraska Week by helping spread the word about the week and personal finance. Remember to register at www.MoneySmartNebraska.org to be recognized for your involvement.
Put money and personal finance tips in daily announcements
Display Money Smart Week promotional materials (logo, flyers, tattoos) for students and teachers
Place the link www.MoneySmartNebraska.org on your homepage
Send information to listservs
Send an email blast to your contacts
Join the Money Smart Nebraska Facebook group and share with your partners
Make table tents in your cafeteria
Create a contest to promote financial literacy and Money Smart Week (i.e. coloring contest for children)
Have a Hallo ”green” event
Have children create Money Smart Week art with sidewalk chalk outside the school
Encourage everyone to wear green for a day during Money Smart Week
Have students present personal finance book or lesson to younger students
Participate in Money Smart Kid essay contest
Online Marketing Participants can download Money Smart Week promotional items at www.MoneySmartNebraska.org (click the resources link in the left had column). These materials can help create awareness for the week and/or publicize individual events.
Logos Logos can be placed on a wide of array of materials to promote Money Smart Week activities.
Posters Posters are another marketing tool. Available sizes are either 8 ½” x 11” or 11” x 17”. The posters allow for customizable text and can be downloaded at www.MoneySmartNebraska.org.
Collateral Materials Also available under the resources link on the website are sample materials including radio public service announcement scripts, newsletter articles, press releases, fact sheets, talking points, PowerPoint presentations and financial literacy facts. All are available for free download and can be customized to your specific organization.
Resources The following resources are ways to incorporate personal finance into your classroom:
Fifty Nifty Econ Cards are a set of economic and personal finance concept cards accompanied by a teacher resource guide that suggests activities and games for use with the cards. The cards are appropriate for grades K-8. View information online and order a free set of the cards at http://www.federalreserveeducation.org/resources/fiftynifty/.
Children’s literature can contain many economic and personal finance topics. A variety of lesson plans from scarcity to competition, division of labor and incentives accompany selected books at www.stlouisfed.org/education_resources.
The Traveling Trunk can be used with elementary and middle school students to develop an awareness of the Federal Reserve Bank and to share resources available on money and banking. The trunk includes hands-on artifacts with related talking points, as well as lesson plans and activities to teach money concepts. The trunk can be reserved by contacting Megan Manning at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402.221.5622.
“Professor Finance and Fed Boy Meet the Catastrophe Clan” is a personal finance role play and lesson plan that gives an overview of credit and loan operations and consumers’ rights to credit through the CARD Act. It is appropriate for grades 9-12 and available at http://kansascityfed.org/publicat/education/teachingresources/fed_boy_lesson_plan.pdf.
EcEdWeb, the Economic Education Web, provides extensive resources and materials for teaching K-12 economics and personal finance. Search the available offerings at http://ecedweb.unomaha.edu/home.cfm.
EconEdReviews is the place to find economic education lessons and materials for the K-12 classroom. Teachers who have used the economics and personal finance lessons will guide you with their reviews and rating. Search for lesson materials by grade level, concept, subject and/or standard at www.econedreviews.org.
EconEdLink is a premier source of classroom tested, Internet-based economic and personal finance lesson and resources for teachers, students and parents. Thousands of free lessons are available at www.econedlink.org.
FinanceChallenge Online! is an online academic competition designed to serve the needs of personal finance, consumer science, life skills and business students that learn economics and financial literacy topics but are not in a dedicated economics class. The FinanceChallenge Online! Is a fun way teachers can generate interest in financial literacy. For more information, contact Jennifer Davidson at email@example.com or 402.472.2333.
Money Smart Kid Essay Contest is open to all Nebraska students in grades 6-8. The top essay will win a $1000 College Savings Plan of Nebraska account. Address this year’s topic: Please explain why savings is so important, what you are currently saving money for and what savings steps you are taking to help achieve your goal. Get full details and an entry form at www.nebraskacouncil.org.
What is the Nebraska Financial Education Coalition?
The Nebraska Financial Education Coalition is a group of interested businesses, individuals, financial institutions, and government and non-profit agencies who believe that basic personal financial literacy is an essential skill. The Coalition’s mission is to strive to improve the personal financial knowledge and decision-making ability of Nebraska citizens by promoting public awareness of the need for personal financial education, and by facilitating networking and partnerships for financial education service providers. Our long-term goal: for all Nebraska citizens – no matter the age, background or circumstance – to achieve long-term personal financial health. The Nebraska Financial Education Coalition is also an affiliate of the National Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy. Jump$tart is a national coalition of organizations dedicated to improving the financial literacy of kindergarten through college-age youth by providing advocacy, research, standards and educational resources. For more information about the Nebraska Financial Education Coalition, visit out site at www.nebraskafinancialeducation.org.
Contacts Jennifer Davidson, Nebraska Council on Economic Education
To learn more about Money Smart Nebraska Week, visit www.MoneySmartNebraska.org.
To learn more about the Nebraska Financial Education Coalition, visit www.nebraskafinancialeducation.org.