Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Teach them and they will learn!

I usually have higher expectations than can be met. But this year, I think I've already exceeded my own expectations! I am thoroughly impressed with our group of 30 kids, our 2 Americorps members, our numerous volunteers, and Sylvia!

This year we have created a checkbook system for our discipline. The kids earn $5 simply for showing up (because sometimes 1/2 the battle is won simply by showing up!). They earn and lose "money" from their check register based on their behavior. With their "money," they can "buy" opportunities to be the photographer for the day...reporter for the day...field trips...weekend take-home activites...etc.

In addition to their daily financial lessons, they all have financial literacy classes on Monday...and this Friday we will take a field trip to WaMu so the kids (with their parents, of course) will learn about and be able to open a savings account where they can start by depositing as little as 25 cents.

I think one of the best things my parents taught me early on was how to write a check, manage my money, and make wise choices with what I had. I hope that we can do the same for the kids in our After-School Academy.

So far, it seems to be working. We "sold" two tickets to Lily's Purple Plastic Purse next Friday for $50. Two kids had enough money to buy the tickets. Others were disappointed that they, too, weren't getting the chance to go.

This particular picture must be one of the kids showing off his large balance in his checkbook. :)

All of the pictures here were taken by kids who "bought" the camera for a day in order to be a photographer-for-a-day.

These are great kids! I'll write about our Microsoft Publisher class in the next post.