Thank You And Welcome, Middle School Teachers!
What a whirlwind school year this has been so far... with teachers grappling with remote vs. in-person vs. hybrid learning models - not to mention the addition of a handful more titles to your overflowing job descriptions - you all are persevering through an immense nationwide challenge. In the face of it all, your grit and determination are some of the most inspiring examples of leadership we have ever seen!
We wanted to take a special moment on today's NGPF Blog to welcome and thank a group of teachers who in the last few months have grown to represent over 10% of the NGPF Community: Middle School Teachers! You are heard, you are awesome, and you are more than welcome in this family. Thank you for participating, lending your time, and sharing your passion for middle school financial education!
As a token of NGPF's appreciation for you, we wanted to outline our plans for supporting you and welcoming middle school teacher voices further in the coming days, weeks, and months. Check it out below!
1. Your own Middle School NGPF Personal Finance Course (of course!)
See what we did there?
The NEW Middle School Course from NGPF helps students in grades 6-8 engage with questions about personal finance by connecting to their real lives AND their goals for the future. Teachers begin with values and goals discussions in the first unit, Money in Our Lives, before advancing to the more content-specific units:
- Consumer Skills
- Protecting Yourself (Insurance, Pitfalls)
The Final 2 Units focus on the professional, interpersonal, and financial skills students will need to succeed in high school and beyond:
- Prepare for Success
- Life After High School
You can check out the NEW Middle School Curriculum from NGPF here.
2. Specialized Middle School Professional Development Sessions
You ask, and NGPF delivers!
In addition to a raft of ongoing new 1-hour Virtual PDs tailored to Middle School Teachers, NGPF has scheduled a 6-hour Middle School Virtual FinCamp, the first of its kind. If you've yet to experience the magic of a Virtual FinCamp OR if you've been to a VFC in the past but want more Middle School collaboration, these events are for you.
Register for Middle School: Foundations | Saturday, October 17 at 6:00am PST / 9:00am EST here.
Register for Middle School: Implementation | Saturday October 17 at 9:00am PST / 12:00pm EST here.
NOTE: for Virtual FinCamps, you can attend either OR both sessions, but must register for each session separately.
3. Your own Middle School NGPF Newsletter and Blog Series
The 3rd Wednesday of each month, Team NGPF has a treat for Middle School teachers: a new Middle School Newsletter! This Newsletter will feature a roundup of all the latest updates to the curriculum, plus in-depth interviews with teachers who use the Middle School Curriculum.
You're also reading the first post of a weekly blog series, published on Wednesdays, for Middle School Teachers. The series features teacher interviews, infographics (like the one below), teaching ideas, lesson highlights, remote and hybrid adaptation ideas, and more - all curated for the Middle School audience. Be sure to sign up for the blog digest so you don't miss out.
4. Listening to the people doing the real work: you!
To learn more about the middle school personal finance world, NGPF conducted a brief survey at the start of the 2020 school year, and heard back from over 250 middle school teachers who use NGPF's new curriculum. One of the most stark lessons from the survey data was that the vast majority (75%) of middle school teachers are embedding personal finance instruction into other courses. This means most middle school teachers who are inclined to teach personal finance concepts are looking for "quick hitters" - lessons and individual activities that can efficiently engage their students in learning about PF topics without eclipsing too much time in their already packed curriculum.
That makes it all the sweeter that the most frequently used adjective for the NGPF Middle School Curriculum is Engaging.
Check out the infographic below to learn more from Middle School Teachers who use the new curriculum:
You can also use the direct link to the Middle School Curriculum here.
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.
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