school of dollars and sense


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  • hi our names are josh and jessi and this is a picture of an adorable duckling. he is about to be an apt metaphor for the communication problem our design intervention is trying to solve.\n
  • this is an xkcd comic demonstrating a duck-loop. ducklings need a leader. without the mother to follow, they could get stuck in a super cute but ultimately fruitless circle, never getting anywhere, never making any progress. the communication problem we seek to solve is the ease of conversation between families, and particularly between parents and children, about money matters. when parents and families have a hard time talking to their kids about finances, people grow up with a shaky understanding, and might be thrown in over their heads once they have to start taking care of their money and bills and budgeting all on their own. then, they struggle through until they get the hang of things enough to get by. unfortunately, they will likely have a hard time expressing to their own kids how they’ve figured things out, because they don’t have any model of, or experience with, how those conversations should go. This means that their kids, just like them, may end up struggling, perpetuating the loop. \n
  • our design intervention, the school of dollars and sense, would help put the mama duck back into the duckloop. \n
  • the school of dollars and sense takes the form of 5 levels of workbooks for families with school-age children. these workbooks would be distributed through a school organization not unlike operation aware or junior achievement, ideally with some sort of simulation or interactive experience to stimulate thinking to kick things off within the school environment.\n
  • each book level introduces a few age-friendly topics with puzzles, quizzes, real-life practice suggestions, and discussion questions. our hope is that these books can help overcome the awkwardness or confusion of talking about money and pave the way for a continuous dialogue of growing complexity up until the child becomes responsible for his own finances, which he will be able to handle without panic because he's been practicing, and he knows that he has someone to turn to for advice and reassurance\n
  • the books are double-sided, so that the adults and children would collaborate, encouraging a level of teamwork and reassurance. reading from one direction speaks directly to the kids, while the other is written for parents and mentors.\n
  • by providing a communal touchstone for both adults and children, filled with simple information and frameworks for further discussion and life experiences, the school of dollars and sense would help everyone, regardless of income level, blaze a trail for healthy and REALISTIC dialogue between their family about their finances, allowing children to step confidently into responsibilities, even when they are young, which is not only helpful for the future but can also allow them to begin to help take care of business in the here and now.\n\n\n
  • each level is represented by a denomination of american money. for kindergartners through 2nd graders, for instance, is level one, or the "pennies," and so on all the way up to the "dollars," who are about to graduate from high school. the family teaching guide features just that money,\n
  • while the fronts feature families holding up the metaphorical weight of money together.\n
  • the notion here is that once a conversation is begun with a child, it will be easier to keep up that dialogue all throughout adolescence and the growing-up period, without the need for one, or even several, big, uncomfortable capital-t talks wherein the adult lectures and the child listens passively. \n
  • their curricula vary widely from level to level. level one, for instance, could include the basics of coins, and how they add together, along with instructions to have a hunt for change and count whatever you find, and encouragement for adults to let their young children help them pay for small purchases using cash.\n\n\n
  • level three, for instance, could contain an introduction to checking accounts and how to use them. families in this level would be encouraged to start a junior checking account for their kids.\n
  • and these books would include diagrams explaining how to fill out checks...\n
  • and deposit slips. \n
  • \n
  • level five, targeted towards high school juniors and seniors, would have information about financial aid, to embolden even those who aren’t sure if college is an option to at least find out what there is, and a place to write down notes about the colleges they research, \n
  • as well as advice on how to create a realistic budget and places to track spending.\n
  • lastly, a fun opportunity for feedback can be found in the notion of students being able to bring completed workbooks, signed by both parents and students, back to the organization to redeem for a tshirt to symbolize completion of the level and eventually the whole program. then, ideally, the student would be ready to take on the financial world by themselves, well educated, well supported, and unafraid. \n
  • and when they have children of their own, students of the school of dollars and sense can feel confident in their ability to share their knowledge and experience, too.\n
  • school of dollars and sense

    1. 1. dollarsdollars
    2. 2. Anatomy of a Check You will put the date Your name and here when you write This is each check’s mailing address are a check so that you number. This allows printed here when can track spending. you to track which you order checks. checks go where, and when they go through. NAM E 1001 In this box, you writeThe name of the in numerals the dollarperson or company 1234 Main St. Apt. 101 D ATE amount of the check,to whom the check Kansas City, MO. 64112 including written goes here. P AY T O T HE OR D ER OF $ D O LLA RS Your Bank Address of Your Bank On this line, you willThe location of Kansas City, MO. 64112 write out the dollaryour checking amount in full wordsaccount goes here. FOR MP ending with “and (?)/100” to denote ⑆123456789⑆ ⑈1234567⑈ any change. The name of the Your signature will go person or company here when you are to whom the check This routing number, This number is your done writing a check. is written goes here. used by electronic checking account It’s signing a contract. processors, refers number. You should to your bank. try to memorize it!
    3. 3. Anatomy of a Deposit Slip These are the dollar columns. Write your dollars so that the These are the decimal single dollars are in columns. Change up In this row, you will Here is where you the column closest to to a dollar belongs in write how many write today’s date. the decimals. these columns. dollars & cents you want to deposit in cash. If you’re not depositing any cash, go ahead and leave this row blank.Here is where you Cashwrite your name. D ATE Checks NAM E In these rows, you will write the amount AC CO U N T N U M BER separately for each check you want to deposit. If you needIf you successfully more rows than this,memorized your there are often moreaccount number, Subtotal spaces on the backwrite it here. If not, of the deposit slip. Your Bankyou can look at one Less Cashof your checks to Address of Your Bankfind it. The bank Kansas City, MO. 64112 TOTALteller can also help In this row, you writeyou, if necessary! the total sum of all the cash and all the checks you have listed so far. Your bank’s info will In the last row, you In this row, you write already be printed will write the total of how much cash you on your deposit slip. your deposit minus would like back after your cash back. This the transaction. is the money you are actually putting in the bank.
    4. 4. Weekly Budgeting Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday total week total