About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

Author: Tim Ranzetta

How To Advocate for Financial Education...Student Voices Matter

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Jun 24, 2018
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Advocacy, Schools In News, Current Events
I stumbled across an amazing example of advocacy for financial education coming out of Roaring Fork High School in Colorado. Two high school students there, Stefan Platzer and Xio Alvarez, are working hard on a project to make the case for money management courses in their high school. As described in the article, their project is a great model on how to advocate for financial education.  Student voice drove the process as their survey results led them to the obvious conclusion that...

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks To Melissa Fries About Running An Effective College Access and Success Program

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Jun 22, 2018
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Paying for College, Podcasts
 Melissa Fries has dedicated nearly two decades to ensuring students are equipped with the skills they need to thrive in the future. Initially recruited by her professor as a volunteer for the Making Waves Foundation, Melissa’s enthusiasm for the program has helped shape her to become their Executive Director of the College & Alumni Program. Hear how she, along with her team, enable low income youth to and through college and on to meaningful careers. Details: 0:00–1:04...

Activity Idea: Engaging Parents Through Student Interviews

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Jun 21, 2018
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Parent Conversations, Activities, Teaching Strategies, Tips for Teachers
Thanks to Danielle Stiebs of Oak Creek High School in Oak Creek, Wisconsin for sharing this resource during our first FinCamp PLUS in Madison this week. As personal finance educators, we all know the importance of parents/guardians as they have tremendous influence in money attitudes and behaviors of their children. We know from this Question of the Day that only about 61% of students talk to Mom and/or Dad about money.  She has developed some great questions (and tweaked them over the...

Videos: Brain Games Related to Money

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Jun 21, 2018
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Behavioral Finance, Video Resource, Investing, Advertising, Financial Scams
I was just introduced to this National Geographic TV show called Brain Games. We watched an episode today and I am hooked. What makes it compelling? It requires active participation on the part of the viewer and provides a heavy dose of behavioral finance. I am queuing up this list to binge watch one lazy summer afternoon (does that exist?), but thought I would share ahead of this weekend in case someone else :) was motivated to send me a few discussion questions (tim@ngpf.org) that they would...

Long-form: One of the best articles that I have read about the psychology of money

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Jun 20, 2018
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Personal Finance, Behavioral Finance
It's the summer, so we all have time for longer form videos and articles. Look for these periodically over the next few month. Morgan Housel is quickly becoming one of my financial faves after I heard him on this podcast recently.  Then I came across his article simply titled Psychology of Money in which he lists 20 examples of "bad behavior" with money that he has witnessed first-hand. He's a great story-teller and provides great examples that you can share with your students. See how many...

5 Internet Trends You Should Be Aware Of

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Jun 19, 2018
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Personal Finance
Mary Meeker is out with her voluminous (294 slides worth!) Internet Trends analysis for 2018. I wanted to break this up into a few posts highlighting trends that tie into the financial lives of our students. Don't worry, we will turn these into Questions of the Day in time for the 2018-19 school year and we also have activities that incorporate these trends. Here are the first five... 1) 60% of payment transactions are occurring digitally (outside of a store environment): NGPF Lesson (updated...

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks to Economics Professor and Marginal Revolution University (MRU) Co-Founder Alex Tabarrok

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Jun 15, 2018
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Behavioral Finance, Podcasts, Investing, Personal Finance
Alex Tabarrok, an economics professor at George Mason University, holds behavioral finance near and dear to his heart—and he’s got lots to show for it! A staunch advocate of financial education, he co-founded Marginal Revolution University, to bring economics education to the masses (listen to the podcast to learn more about its reach). Listen to Alex describe the power of prediction markets, how he teaches investing, his investing philosophy and the challenges and thrills of...

Tim Talks to National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) CEO Ted Beck

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Jun 08, 2018
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Personal Finance, Podcasts, Advocacy, Current Events, Research
With retirement looming on the horizon and a successful decade-plus tenure at leading non-profit, NEFE, I wanted to get Ted Beck on the podcast to reflect on his experience as a leader in the field. There is so much we can learn from his perspectives on curriculum, teacher PD, research and innovation. He shared his insights on the major achievements as well as the opportunities that lie ahead in the field. Ted’s legacy of creating opportunities for collaboration, instilling a sense of...

Last Question of the Day: Are millennials who use their mobile phones to pay for things at higher or lower risk for financial mismanagement?

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Jun 07, 2018
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Checking Accounts, Question of the Day, Research, Payment Types
Before we get to the Answer... In October, we made the bold decision to create a daily Question of the Day for the 2017-2018 school year....and we made it! A huge thank you to Danielle for her assistance! For those of you still in session, we have this incredible list (sorted by topic) for you to choose from. Questions of the Day will resume again in early August. In the meantime, please let us know how you used them in your classroom and your students' favorites (and any great questions of the...

Question of the Day: What percent of teens are expected to have a summer job in 2018?

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Jun 06, 2018
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Career, Question of the Day, Employment, Research
Answer: 31% Questions: What are your summer plans?  If you are getting a summer job... How did you get the job? How much will you be earning? How much do you hope to save? What skills do you hope to develop?  Do you think summer jobs are important? Why or why not?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the Numbers (from MarketWatch): "...predictions from researchers at the Drexel...

Question of the Day: What's the average monthly payment for a new car purchased in 2018?

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Jun 05, 2018
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions, Current Events, Research
Answer: $523 Questions: When do you expect to buy your first car? Will you buy new or used? Explain your answer.  What are other costs that you can expect to pay for a car beyond the car payment?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (from CNBC): In the first quarter of this year, the average monthly loan payment for a new vehicle climbed $15 compared with last year, hitting an...

NGPF Extra Mile Award: PLC Participants

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Jun 04, 2018
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Professional Development, Current Events, Personal Finance
NGPF's Professional Learning Community (PLC) provides educators with an opportunity to collaborate virtually on an artifact that they want to improve. Teachers meet for 30 minutes over a 3-5 week period until each member has received feedback on their resource. Here's what they tell us they love about PLCs: "I really enjoyed participating in the PLC. Not only did I get fresh ideas on how to revise my own project, but I got additional project ideas that I can use immediately in my class."...

Question of the Day: What's the #1 expenditure for the average American household?

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Jun 04, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Budgeting
Answer: Housing Here are the top 5 expenses for households (with amounts spent in 2016 ): Housing ($18,886) Transportation ($9,049) Food ($7,203) Personal insurance and pensions ($6,831): largely Social Security payments Healthcare ($4,612) Questions: What are some examples of housing costs? transportation costs?  Do you think these costs are about the same across your state? Explain.   Average income for American household in 2016 was almost $75,000. One rule of thumb is that...

Question of the Day: Do consumers struggle more with repaying mortgage debt or student loan debt?

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Jun 03, 2018
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Student Loans, Question of the Day, Paying for College, Mortgages
Answer Student loan debt. Student loans had a 10.7% delinquency rate (over 90 days past due) vs. mortgage debt which had a delinquency rate of 1.2% in 1Q 2018.  Questions: What is the major difference between how a lender evaluates a consumer taking out a mortgage vs. how the government evaluates a student taking out a federal student loan?  What do you think happens if someone stops making payments on their mortgage? On their student loan?  Why do you think that more than 1 in...

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks To Investing Legend Charley Ellis

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Jun 01, 2018
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Podcasts, Investing, Index Funds, Stocks
Harvard Business School professor, founder of influential investment consultant Greenwich Associates, chair of Yale University investment committee (top performing endowment led by David Swenson), director at Vanguard Investments and one of the earliest proponents of index investing. Oh and he's written many best-selling books too. We obviously had a lot to talk about.  Still working 70 hour work weeks at 80+, Charley generously shares what he's learned over his lifetime as an investor and...