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

NGPF Podcast: Amobi Okugo is leading the frugal athlete movement

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Dec 06, 2019
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Podcasts
I really enjoyed my recent conversation with professional soccer player, Amobi Okugo. Off the field, Amobi developed a website, A Frugal Athlete, focused on helping professional athletes manage their money effectively. In this podcast, Amobi shares what he learned from his parents about money, his frugal tendencies and how he handled that first big paycheck after signing his professional contract (spoiler alert: there's no Bentley in his garage!). Amobi's commitment to changing the narrative of...

What's the Value of A Personal Finance Course? [UPDATED]

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Dec 04, 2019
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Personal Finance, Research
 Priceless!  As more states consider increasing access to personal finance, we should expect advocates to be questioned about the value of a personal finance course or in investment parlance, "What's the Return on Investment (ROI)?"   We know there is lots of academic value to the course as it develops the following skills: Analytical thinking Problem-solving Teamwork through group projects Decision-making in ambiguous situations where there may not be one right answer...

QoD: Can you name three of the most popular items on wish lists this holiday season?

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Dec 04, 2019
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions, Behavioral Finance
Answer: Other fun facts:  Average consumer expects to spend $1,048 82% of 18-24 year olds plan to purchase for friends 56% of shoppers say they will shop online -------- Questions: What are the top items on your wish list?  Have you created a budget for your holiday spending? Why do you think it's so difficult for people to keep to their holiday budgets?  What is the best gift under $20 that you have ever received? that you have ever given? What types of gifts do you think...

November 20, 2019: A Day in the Life of the NGPF website

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Dec 03, 2019
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Teaching Strategies
It's been over 2 1/2 years since I last did a post highlighting how teachers are using our website. A lot has changed since then, as visitors to our website have quadrupled since then.  By now, you realize that I am a data geek, so it would only seem natural that I obsess over our website statistics and the story it tells about how educators, students, parents and others use us. Please note that we don’t track individual users on our site and get our aggregate data from Google...

QoD: The number one job skill that very successful businesspeople attribute their success to is their __________ skills.

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Dec 03, 2019
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Question of the Day, Career
Answer: Sales  Questions: What does it take to be a successful salesperson?  How might these skills help someone be successful in other areas of business?  Raise your hand if you think you would consider going into sales? What sorts of sales-type jobs could you get at your age? Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers: (Yahoo Finance) Two-thirds of the mega-wealthy individuals interviewed for this...

QoD: Match the percent with the correct statistic from a recent survey of store credit cardholders: 20%, 40%.

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Dec 02, 2019
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Behavioral Finance, Question of the Day, Budgeting, Parent Conversations, Purchase Decisions
_______ of consumers with retail (store) charge card regret their decision to apply for this card. This may be explained by the fact that ___________ still have not paid back their charges from the 2018 holiday season.  Questions: Have you (or someone you know) ever been asked when shopping at a store whether you wanted to open a store credit card?  How does the cashier try and encourage the shopper to sign up?  Why do you think so many cardholders regret their decision to apply...

Chart of the Week: What happens in an internet minute?

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Dec 02, 2019
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Chart of the Week
This one is for the math teachers out there. Have your students analyze both pie charts to see how activities on the internet have changed over the past year: Questions: Compare activities on the internet for 2018 and 2019 Be sure that the year over year comparisons you are analyzing have the same units.  Which activities grew the most on a percentage basis?  Which activities grew the least on a percentage basis?   Make your predictions for 2020 for each of the...

Interactive Monday: This interactive will change the way students/parents evaluate colleges

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Dec 01, 2019
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Interactive, Paying for College
Ok, money isn't everything when it comes to evaluating colleges but it's certainly a big thing as the cost of a college degree exceeds 6 figures for most families. As a result, these three letters, ROI (return on investment), seem to be creeping into the conversation for more and more college going students and their families. Calculating the I (investment) has typically been the easier part of the formula. Once you waded through the obtuse financial aid award letters and figured out the "out of...

QoD: What percent of reviews posted on popular e-commerce sites are fake?

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Dec 01, 2019
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Question of the Day, Behavioral Finance, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions
Just in time for the busy online shopping days ahead... Answer: About 1/3 (33%) Questions: How much do you rely on online reviews before purchasing an item?  Have you ever noticed a fake review while shopping online? What made you think it was fake? Do you think that online reviews impact whether people purchase an item or not? Explain.  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (Quartz): Review tracking...

NGPF Podcast: Melissa Santoyo on the importance of financial education for first-gen students

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Nov 29, 2019
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Podcasts, Advocacy
I came across Melissa Santoyo's op-ed in her college paper at Northwestern University and definitely wanted to learn more. In the op-ed, Melissa describes the challenges that first-gen students face in completing the FAFSA and how it can be a hindrance to higher education. She also notes how widespread financial illiteracy is among all undergrads and makes the argument that financial literacy is a privilege which not everyone has access to. This reality is what the community of personal finance...

QoD: When do consumers do more online shopping: Black Friday or Cyber Monday?

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Nov 26, 2019
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Question of the Day, Budgeting, Purchase Decisions
Answer: Cyber Monday Questions: Which generation is most likely to look for bargains on Cyber Monday? Why do you think this generation is more likely to look for bargains on that day? Do you plan to do any shopping on either Black Friday or Cyber Monday? Do you have a budget for holiday gifts this year? Why or why not?  Why do you think that so many people shop on these two days? Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom....

QoD: What is the most popular music streaming service?

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Nov 25, 2019
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Question of the Day, Behavioral Finance, Budgeting
Answer: YouTube Questions: What is your go-to source for music?  What do you like most about it? How much do you pay for it?  How does YouTube compare to Spotify or Pandora when it comes to music streaming? What would be your cost in time/money if you wanted to switch from your current streaming service?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers: (Washington Post) Not Spotify, not Apple Music,...

Map of the Week: What's the most iconic restaurant chain founded (or headquartered) in your state?

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Nov 25, 2019
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Chart of the Week, Budgeting, Research
Hat tip to Jadrian Wooten, Penn State educator, who tweeted about this recently:  It's Thanksgiving week, so thoughts turn to food. Let's just enjoy the map and I can hear the debates going on in your classroom about your student's favorite restaurant chain.   Wondering how the decisions were made on what chain to list on the map? --------------------- Food is one of your students' largest expense. Which snack brands are most favored by your students? We have a Question of the...

Interactive Monday: How are you using your time?

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Nov 24, 2019
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Interactive, Budgeting
Time management is a critical skill for all high school students to master. While students may not have much of their own money to budget, they do have time. This interactive from Flowing Data allows students to see what activities the typical 15-24 year old is doing at a specific time. The students are able to choose three variables: gender, age and time of day. They can toggle the time of day to see how activities will vary throughout the day. Here's an example:  Questions: Map out your...

QoD: Match with percent with survey results from college-going students: 43%, 73%, 88%

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Nov 24, 2019
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Question of the Day, Paying for College, Student Loans
Hat tip to Derek D'Angelo for highlighting this research.  Survey results: __________ % said the major benefit of a degree was a "Potentially better job / income." __________% of respondents reported needing money for college outside of their savings. __________% of respondents reported their level of stress about the college application process as “High" Answers:   43% said the major benefit of a degree was a "Potentially better job / income." 88% of...