Step 1 Target a Bank/School
Get together with a prospective bank/school to see if they are interested in participating and if they are get to know your bank/school partner.
Establish a relationship early in the program with the person that will be heading Saving Makes "Cents" at your partner bank/school.
Step 2 Plan a Strategy
Plan a "Strategy Session" with the committed school or bank representative in order to design your own Saving Makes "Cents" Program.
- Establish joint goals and expectations.
- Discuss the implementation process.
- Continue to discuss and accordingly modify your design throughout the program.
- Review the curriculum.
- Establish mutually agreeable "bank days" (days when students deposit money into their savings account).
Step 3 School Committee Approval
Banks must meet with your local school committee to attain approval for the program.
Step 4 Notify All Parents or Guardians
It is important to clearly explain student banking rules and procedures to parents and guardians before student accounts are opened. Participating banks in the program send a letter to the parents informing them of the program and require a parent's signature to open a savings account for the student.
One way to inform the parents is at a PTA meeting or on parent/teacher night. This is an excellent venue for bank officials to answer any questions parents may have, and obtain needed information. Another way is through usual correspondence between the school and parents. Bankers, principals and teachers should work together on the initial presentation to parents; this will minimize individual questions or concerns.
COMMITMENT OF PARTICIPATING SCHOOLS
- Saving Makes "Cents" is centered around a 13-lesson teaching manual designed as a guide to participating educators. The manual is intentionally flexible to allow each teacher to use his/her own creative teaching style and skills in implementing the program. Teachers are able to choose information from the manual he/she deems appropriate for their class (See curriculum outline attached).
- Saving Makes "Cents" is adaptable for grades three to six. The curriculum should be implemented in one grade level to avoid redundancy when the children graduate to the next level, but several grades can participate simultaneously in the savings account program.
- Each lesson was developed with a 40-minute time frame in mind although this is adaptable to each teacher. At least one full lesson should be taught a month. In many schools now using Saving Makes "Cents", a representative from the sponsoring bank assists in lesson presentation.
- Lessons were designed to be integrated into the existing curriculum in an interdisciplinary manner rather than as an "add on."
- Each lesson is accompanied by several suggested activities to give students the opportunity to apply what they have learned to real life situations.
Suggested activities that run throughout the manual are both high and low level activities to allow students who progress at different levels to participate. The activities are broken down into six categories: math, social studies/history, science, computer and creative arts.