The students were excited to take on this challenge…it was thrilling to see the amount of coins grow in our bank over time and the students were able to connect the increase in coins to savings! – Kristine Ray, Kindergarten teacher, West Lincoln Elementary
Last Fall, JA of Lincoln launched a brand new program with a simple goal – get our youngest students excited about saving! We called it Bank on Youth, and kindergarten classrooms from all across Lincoln were eager to get involved. With help from State Farm, JA provided any classroom that wanted one with a piggy bank, a lesson plan, and a challenge – let the students choose something they’d like to buy for their classroom or school, figure out how much money they’d need, and then spend the school year raising money toward that goal. To top it all off, State Farm agreed to double the savings of some of the classrooms that put in the most effort!
The program wrapped up last week with awards presentations to some of the outstanding classrooms, and we could not be happier with the results! State Farm was so impressed with how hard the students worked toward their goals that they decided to go far beyond their original pledge to double the savings of the classrooms, and instead gave out grants of $1,000, $2,000, and $3,000 to classrooms at 5 different schools!! Here are the big winners:
Saint John The Apostle: $3,000
These kindergarteners surpassed everyone’s expectations, raising more than $1,500 for additional listening/CD on books stations. With the additional money from State Farm, they’ll even be able to buy some for their friends in first grade as well!
Teacher Kathie Rynearson said, “We did raise an amazing amount of money with the help of our parents and I was so pleased at how well we could involve the economics of what we learn in JA through it. But there are some very cool human interest type personal happenings that occurred too.”
Saint Joseph Catholic School: $1,000
Teacher Kelly Baumgartener said, “The Bank on Youth program compliments our math curriculum, and serves as a wonderful example of how to ‘give back’ and take pride in our classrooms and school.”
Christ Schools: $1,000
Teacher Linda Becken said, “Bank on Youth has given us a great opportunity to talk about saving money… it has tied in nicely with our curriculum on money and the students have spent time identifying the coins and counting the money.”
We are so grateful to everyone who participated, and especially to the wonderful teachers who trusted us enough to take a chance on a brand-new program. We could not be more proud of the hundreds of kindergarteners who worked to make their classrooms and communities better places to learn and play, and we hope that they will carry what they learned about saving money far into the future!
Of course, we owe a huge “Thank You!” to State Farm for their generosity. Once again, we were reminded of what an amazing community Lincoln truly is, and how fortunate we are to be surrounded by people and corporations who care so much about the future of our students. Thanks to all of you, we’re confident that Bank on Youth will be back next year, and we’ll be able to teach even more of Lincoln’s youngest students about the value of saving!