About the Author

Melissa Belardi

Melissa is extremely passionate about making abstract ideas more tangible for students. After teaching High School Physical Science for 5 years on the east coast, she has made the switch to a nonprofit in the hopes of reaching all types of learners. In her experience, students were interested in learning more about personal finance and she believes that all students should have access to this material. She first gained insight into inquiry-based and project style learning during her Masters in Education at the University of Pennsylvania GSE and believes these methods are ideal for students to connect financial concepts with their lives. Other than creating learning materials, Melissa loves live music, great food, and playing soccer.

Author: Melissa Belardi

Math Spotlight: Nothing can be said to be certain, except MATH and taxes

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Apr 18, 2018
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Math, Taxes, Teaching Strategies
So yesterday was the beloved TAX DAY here in the US. Funnily enough, the IRS website was down so maybe those procrastinators will get lucky and be given an extension (update: they were given one more day). I’m sure that students are asking all types of tax questions due to both current events and the tax season, so it is only fitting that we highlight a Taxes Activity related to Math for our Math Spotlight this week! Drum roll…To kick it off, CALCULATE: Completing a 1040EZ is a...

Add a Little Math Sparkle to your Classroom with Number Chugs

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Apr 11, 2018
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Math, Teaching Strategies
Incorporating Math into a Personal Finance Classroom & Financial Concepts into the Math Classroom. When we started this project, I thought deeply about my years teaching physics. For instance, I wanted to take a related and important topic, like Climate Change and insert it into my curriculum, but I ran into a number of challenges. The physics concepts associated with Climate Change were too advanced for my students and the climate change concepts were often too surface level to relate to...

CHAMPIONSHIP MATCHUP: #1 PAYBACK vs. #5 SPENT

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Apr 05, 2018
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Interactive, Behavioral Finance, Paying for College, Budgeting
  Update (9:30PM PT): PAYBACK Leading SPENT 129-63 BE HEARD! VOTE HERE FOR THE CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND VOTING ENDS FRIDAY AT 11:59PM PACIFIC TIME   The savagery! The demagoguery! The calamity! The Championship Game is upon us. Respectively, #1 PAYBACK and #5 SPENT just threw down two MASSIVE statement wins over energetic championship hopeful #2 Can You Make It As An Uber Driver and gritty underdog #11 Tale Of Two Credit Scores. As we know, respectively does not mean the same thing as...

Feature Upgrade: NGPF's Website Search Just Got A Lot Better!

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Mar 28, 2018
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Personal Finance
Searching the NGPF website just got better...a heckuva lot better!  We know how much you like searching our site..in fact, in 2018, you have already searched for over 500 unique terms on our website. Here's the top 10 keywords that you are searching for: PAYBACK and PAYBACK Challenge (last day to send in your essay is Friday, March 30th! More details here) Answer Key: Check out our Help Center for details on how to obtain Answer Keys. It starts with opening a Teacher Account (upper right...

NGPF Sweet Sixteen Day #4: Saturday Skirmish

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Mar 23, 2018
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Personal Finance, Activities, Investing, Interactive, Credit Scores, Budgeting, Behavioral Finance
The two weekend tilts are upon us! Who will join the 6 other Sweet Sixteen winners from the week? Time (and YOUR social media influence) will tell. Let ‘em hear your voice in the rafters, baby! Vote in Today’s Tilts: #4 Joining the Market vs. #13 FICO Score Simulator #5 Spent vs. #12 Think You Can Beat The Stock Market? FINAL Update on Sunday, March 25 at 7AM In a major upset, #13 FiCO Score advances to the Elite 8 with a 27-11 trouncing of Joining the Market. Pundits wonder...

NGPF Sweet Sixteen Day 3: The Madness Multiplies in Matches 5 & 6!

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Mar 22, 2018
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Personal Finance
   FINAL Mutual Fund stretched their early lead and advanced to the Elite 8 with a win over Taxes Kahoot by a final of 71-56.  Two Credit Scores took down $8 Million Janitor by an identical 71-56 score.  Update on Friday at 10AM PT Both matches are neck and neck with Mutual Fund up 36-35 over Taxes Kahoot and Two Credit Scores leading $8 Million Janitor by the score of 38-33. A few votes can tip the balance in determining who advances to the Elite 8. A well-placed source...

NGPF Sweet 16: #2 Make It As an Uber Driver? vs. #15 Five Stocks On Your Birthday; #7 Online Tools and Apps vs. #10 Earnings By Major

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Mar 21, 2018
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Personal Finance, Stocks, Paying for College, Current Events, Career, Activity, Activities, Interactive, Employment
  FINAL RESULTS Midnight Thursday Uber Driver advances to the next round with a convincing win scoring 62 vs. Five Stocks 43 Earnings by Major upsets Online Tools and Apps by a score of 56-48 Update 12 noon Thursday Uber Driver continues to maintain its lead over Five Stocks at 59-41 (actual vote totals)  Earnings by Major has expanded its lead to vs. Online Tools and Apps with the score of 54-46 (actual vote totals). Where's the social media support for Online Tools and Apps?...

Are you ready to rumble?: #1 PAYBACK vs. #16 Overdraft Fees AND #8 Community Credit vs. #9 S&P 500 Map

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Mar 20, 2018
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Personal Finance
FINAL PAYBACK maintained its lead throughout and coasted to 90-10 win over Overdraft Fee. Overdraft Fees coach was classy in defeat, "We are just happy that we increased national awareness of our program and hopefully young people everywhere got the message. Just Say No to overdraft fees! Community Credit hung on for 53-47 win over S&P 500 Map. In the post-game press conference, S&P 500's leading scorer had this to say:  "We're just grateful to have the opportunity tor raise...

Adventures in Personal Finance: Vacationing on a Budget!

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Dec 12, 2017
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Article, Budgeting, Personal Finance
My partner and I were living in New York City. At the time, I was a Physics Teacher/Basketball Coach, and he was a Dental School Student at NYU. Needless to say, what we had in personality we lacked in expendable finances. Both of us were living on a tight budget. Luckily in NYC, that means amazingly tasty burritos from incredible secret hole-in-the-wall restaurants, lots of dumplings, free outdoor showings of the opera at Lincoln Center, and $10 comedy where you catch a celebrity now and then....