As you may know, NGPF released its Middle School Course in 2020, and we were excited to receive many inquiries from high school educators on how they might be able to use the course with their students. Below, you’ll find FIVE ways you can use the NGPF Middle School Course to supplement your personal finance curriculum with your high schoolers! (Bonus announcement at the end of the blog post!)
#1: REVIEW THE BASICS
If your students are brand new to personal finance or it’s been a while since they’ve thought about the content, the Middle School Course is a great way to lay a foundation of key concepts that can be expanded on. You can pick and choose how much you want to use from the course with your students based on their needs. Maybe it’s a single video that reviews the basics. Maybe it’s an entire lesson that allows you to spend more time on a particular topic. Whatever you choose, you’ll find that the Middle School Course is a perfect place to start.
#2: ADJUST FOR SLOWER PACING
Because the Middle School Course focuses on foundational concepts in personal finance, the lessons have fewer resources and are more concise when compared to NGPF’s high school lessons. Teachers have told us that they especially enjoy using these lessons for online instruction or asynchronous instruction, because students find the lessons easier to navigate and may require less support!
#3: SIMPLIFY CORE ACTIVITIES
Each lesson in the Middle School Course has a core activity (in the DO IT section) that has students apply the knowledge they’ve learned. Because these activities are written at the middle school level, they are a great way to scaffold activities for your students. Plus, the activities across the course vary widely including, MATH, FINE PRINT, MOVE, PRACTICE, and more so your students will never be bored! You can even pick and choose the activity types that you think your students would benefit from. For example, we’ve heard from many high school math educators that they are excited to use the middle school MATH activities for students who may need more practice or support.
#4: ESTABLISH KEY VOCABULARY
Each of the nine units in the Middle School Course has an accompanying Quizlet vocabulary set that reviews the core vocabulary for that unit. Whether your students are just learning the basics for the unit or they’re studying for an upcoming assessment, these vocabulary sets can be a great way for them to review key terms they’ll need to know.
Finally, the Middle School Course is a fantastic way to differentiate personal finance content and meet your students where they are at. We’ve heard high school educators using the course with:
- Special education students
- Students with 504s or IEPs
- ELL students (ALL of the Student Activity Packets for each lesson are available in Spanish!)
As you’ve seen from this list, the Middle School Course isn’t just for middle schoolers! We hope these ideas are helpful as you think about how to use this course with your high school students!
BONUS ANNOUNCEMENT: We’re working hard to get all of the lessons in the NGPF Middle School Course on Nearpod! Be on the lookout for this release later this month!
About the Authors
Sonia has always been passionate about instruction and improving students’ learning experiences. She’s come a long way since her days as a first grader, when she would “teach” music and read to her very attentive stuffed animals after school. Since then, she has taught students as a K-12 tutor, worked in several EdTech startups in the Bay Area, and completed her Ed.M in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She is passionate about bringing the high quality personal finance content and instruction she wished she’d received in school to the next generation of students and educators. When she isn’t crafting lesson guides or working with teachers, Sonia loves to spend her time singing, being outdoors, and adventuring with family and friends!
Christian comes to NGPF from the world of classroom instruction, where he was a teacher for three years at a public middle school in El Sobrante, California. After leaving the classroom, he joined math tutoring company, Zeal Learning, to help grow their educator-facing sales and marketing efforts. He’s no stranger to making a dollar stretch – while living in the Bay Area on his teacher salary he paid down over $40k in student loans in the span of 3 years. He’s thrilled to share those lessons with teachers and students around the U.S.