NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks to Maggie Robles About Creating a Successful Financial Math Program at Centennial High School (CA)
Maggie Roble’s students at Centennial High School in Corona, California asked relentlessly why there was no class on practical, financial math they could use outside of classroom. She decided to change things for the better and built a math class from the ground up that would provide her students with those "real-life" skills. She clearly built something the students love? Since the program’s inception just two years ago, she has increased the number of students in her program from 75 students to close to 200!
How'd she do it? Listen to this podcast to learn how she discovered the power of student advocacy and also hear how this go-getter envisions the future of the program. You are certain to be inspired. Enjoy!
- 0:00–1:19 Introduction
- 1:20–3:53 Maggie on her school community
- 3:54–6:45 Why she built the financial math program from scratch
- 6:46–9:34 Living paycheck to paycheck: learning how to stretch a dollar
- 9:35–12:37 How to discern wants vs. needs and making it work
- 12:38–17:42 Working around the outdated textbook
- 17:43–21:33 How her students advocated for keeping the class
- 21:34–25:17 The future of the financial math program
- 25:18–25:44 A word from NGPF
- 25:45–29:34 Favorite classroom activities
- 29:35–37:00 Credit scores are like school grades
- 37:01–38:33 Best thing bought for under $10
- 38:34–40:04 Biggest money mishap
- 40:05–41:28 What she wished she knew at 18
- 41:29–45:13 Likening index funds to librarians
- 45:14–47:51 Maggie’s message for her former students
- 47:52–49:00 Conclusion
Websites/Resources mentioned during podcast:
- Math Teacher at Centennial High School in Corona, CA
- AVID Program
- Puente Project
- Next Gen Personal Finance website
- NEFE, National Endowment for Financial Education
- Practical Money Matters (VISA)
- PBS’s Two Cents series (Two Cents was on the NGPF podcast, too!)
- Centsai Adulting
- Jump$tart Coalition
- CEE, Council for Economic Education
- H&R Block Challenge
- EverFi’s 9 Modules of Personal Finance
- Shark Tank activity
- TED Talks
- Warren Buffett video on Index Funds (CNBC)
- “In terms of personal finance, the things that I would sometimes veer off and talk about in my math class like percentages and discounts… it usually would be the one topic that would perk their interest the most and they’d always want to know more. ‘Why don’t we get to know more about this? I want to help my mom with the discounts at Kohl’s or I can help my dad…"
About the Authors
Danielle is a native of Southern California and a recent graduate from the University of Maine, where she braved the frigid winters—a feat in and of itself—and earned her Bachelor's degree in International Affairs. She has a passion for working with non-profit organizations and serving populations in underprivileged communities. When Danielle isn't writing NGPF blog posts, spearheading various outreach projects, or managing contests and flash surveys, you can find her doing some sort of outdoor activity, learning a new hobby, or cracking what she thinks are witty puns!
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.
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