FREE Economics and Personal Finance Teacher Resources 

Provided by the Centers for Economic Education at ODU and VA Tech, Updated December 2018

Virginia Council on Economic Education

Decision Making Videos

Life After High School Resource Packet

Economics & Personal Finance Course Scope and Sequence updated version coming soon

Educator Awards for Economics and Personal Finance lessons, units, and career achievement

Next-Gen Personal Finance

National Endowment for Financial Education High School Financial Planning Program – free curriculum with teacher manual and student workbooks

Smart About Money – free online courses

Financial Workshop Kits – geared toward lower socioeconomic families; great for parent workshops

Jump$tart Clearing House

Virginia Jump$tart Coalition

Teaching Money Virginia Lessons, speakers, and classroom resources designed for Virginia teachers of the high school economics/personal finance course

Council on Economic Education: Clearing House/Search Engine: High-quality, standards-based lesson plans, student activities, and reviewed websites.

Federal Reserve Education  St. Louis Federal Reserve education page – Lessons for your smart board, free online classes for students, mobile apps  Lesson: The Free Silver Movement and Inflation Lessons: The Great Depression – lessons, interactives, historical audio clips Katrina’s Classroom:  Financial Lessons from a Hurricane  Oil Prices: Supply and Demand – What’s Driving Oil Prices? Posters/Infographics

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond Invest in What’s Next – Help students answer questions about life after high school. Which path is right for me? What do I stand to gain? What are my funding options for school?

The Federal Reserve and You  Free Video (order or stream)  Also has history content.  The First Bank of the United States, The Second Bank of the United States, The Great Depression, World War II Thru the 1960s, Stagflation in the 1970s, Boom Times & Bubbles: The Internet Age

Lessons:   First Bank of the US – Hamilton vs. Jefferson, Second Bank of the US  (click on HS and scroll down)

Podcasts:  NPR’s Planet Money Imagine you could call up a friend and say, “Meet me at the bar and tell me what’s going on with the economy.” Now imagine that’s actually a fun evening. That’s what they’re going for at Planet Money.  They produce a twice-weekly podcast and blog.

Videos: Two Cents  Videos about personal finance for Gen X.  Perfect for HS students.  Topics include:  credit scores, understanding the Stock Market and the Dow, buying a house, the costs of pet ownership, where tax dollars are spent, etc.

Planning the Prom can be done off or online.  Working in groups, students decide how money should be spent. Their task is to decide which band to hire, where to hold the dance, and what type of refreshments and decorations to provide. Must select one item from each expenditure category.

Explaining the Federal Reserve and Inflation This is one of the best lessons to teach students how the Federal Reserve uses monetary policy to control inflation and promote economic stability.  Lesson 6 from the Great Depression series (scroll all the way to the bottom).

Understanding Fiscal Responsibility  These lessons focus on government institutions, programs, the Federal Reserve, Social Security, and events such as the Panic of 1893. Students become informed citizens as they consider the tradeoffs involved in setting public policy. They learn to articulate their own views by evaluating primary and secondary sources, engaging in group activities and discussions, and writing brief essays.

Listenwise  Their collection of podcasts and public radio keeps teaching connected to the real world and builds student listening skills at the same time.  Social studies, science, current events, literacy.

The Mint: Try It This is the interactive section from the Mint – try the challenges and activities on the left-hand side.  They include – What Kind of Spender are You?, Credit Card IQ, When Will You Be a Millionaire.   Also note the link at the top of the screen titled “Ideas for Teachers” where you can find lesson plans like “Planning the Prom”.

It All Adds Up It All Adds Up is a web site for teens who want to get a head start on their financial futures. The web site contains online games and simulations to help students learn about credit management, buying a car, paying for college, budgeting, saving, and investing.

Fiscal Ship The Fiscal Ship challenges you to put the federal budget on a sustainable course. But budget decisions aren’t only about fiscal sustainability. They also shape the kind of country we live in. To win the game, you need to find a combination of policies that match your values and priorities AND set the budget on a sustainable course.

Lesson Plan to go with simulation:

Chair the Fed Learn how monetary policy works by taking charge of a simulated economy.  Manipulate interest rates and monetary policy to keep the economy on an even track.  Will they reappoint you as Fed Chair?

Moneyville Get Real is a budgeting game for living on your own and making choices about your spending, plus Lemonade Stand

NextGen Investing Simulation  Reviews  every type of investment product (from savings accounts to commodities to gold to Treasury bonds, and more) that can be done in one class period.

APP: “Econ Ed Mobile”  The Econ Low Down from the St. Louis Federal Reserve. Learn about how inflation, the cost of credit, and your decisions affect your spending. For iStuff and Android

Financial Institution Personal Finance Lessons and Resources

Hands-on Banking – Wells Fargo (also in Spanish)

Better Money Habits – Bank of America and Khan Academy

Bank on Your Success – BB&T

Money Smarts  – FDIC

SmartStart Curriculum for Schools,  Virginia Credit Union

Teacher Recommended Resources

Major Financial Decisions Free tools to help you answer important financial planning questions.

Economics Media Library   An extensive library of dynamic economics videos.

Navigate: Exploring College and Careers  This resource is an introduction to the investigation of careers and college and is designed for 7th through 9th grade students. Many students and their families may not be familiar with the pathways to education after high school, and Navigate provides information to begin preparing for success.

Does College Matter?

Three seasons of podcasts presented by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Personal Finance 101 Conversations Personal Finance 101 Conversations is a series of short videos related to timely financial topics for students and consumers in their teens and 20s.

Dollars and Sense Dollars and Sense is a budgeting game created by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond for middle and high school students. Students select a lifestyle and budget for expenses and unexpected events.

Fool Proof Me Our mission is to teach consumers the importance of using caution, questioning sellers, and relying on independent research before spending money.

H&R Block Budget Challenge Learn and practice many real-world money management skills:  paying bills, managing expenses, saving money, investing in retirement and more.

Take Charge Today

A program and curriculum with a decision-based approach to personal finance.  An award-winning program designed by educators, for educators, Take Charge Today provides a consistent framework for thinking through financial choices in order to improve well-being.

Making Personal Finance Decisions  Making Personal Finance Decisions is an award-winning Minnesota Council on Economic Education curriculum designed for secondary teachers recently revised in cooperation with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. This free resource includes 10 units (20 lessons) with interactive activities and handouts on topics like budgeting, saving, and investing.

LifeSmarts LifeSmarts, established in 1994, is the nation’s pioneering consumer organization that offers educational challenges for students and instructional resources for teachers in 6th-12th grade.

Crash Course YouTube Series

35 Videos by Adrienne Hill and Jacob Clifford about economics and personal finance.

Practical Money Skills – NFL Financial Football Game

Visa and the National Football League have teamed up to create Financial Football, a fast-paced, interactive game that engages students while teaching them personal finance skills. The new release features 3D graphics and game-changing opportunities with audibles, blitzes and game-breaking plays.

Banzai! Online Financial Literacy  Exposes students to real-life adult financial dilemmas, from taming a budget and paying auto insurance to navigate taxes. Whether you teach high school, junior high, or elementary-aged students, Banzai lets you choose the difficulty level. And if you want them to level up, there’s even an advanced course.

Biz Kid$ Six Seasons of short video clips featuring young people and their perspectives on personal finance and entrepreneurship.  Accompanying lesson plans, games, and blogs included.

MarketWatch Virtual Stock Exchange Build your portfolio and react to the markets in real-time. Compete against your friends or coworkers to earn your spot at the top of the leaderboards.

How the Market Works Allows users to create their own custom stock game and create educational lessons for their players.

Build Your $tax  You’ve got 20 years to grow your wealth.  Who will have the biggest stacks of money?  Play as a group or alone.

PlaySpent Interactive homelessness and poverty simulation and game that helps people learn to manage basic personal finances.

How I Made My Millions CNBC Business Nation’s monthly feature highlighting how successful entrepreneurs started by solving simple everyday problems with business-centered solutions.