What's an NGPF FinCamp?

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Mar 26, 2017

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then this video is probably worth 2,000. Here’s a video so you can experience what it’s like to attend a FinCamp from a teacher’s perspective

NGPF is committed to providing educators with a robust set of professional development opportunities. These range from asynchronous offerings (podcasts, NGPF blog posts, flash surveys and Q&A Forum) to real-time (PLCs and monthly webinars) to in-person (workshops at state and national conferences and NGPF Summer Institute). We developed FinCamp to provide teachers with a one-day workshop focused on collaboration, curation, creation and content.

We completed our first FinCamp in early March in Palo Alto, California (thanks to the 28 attendees!) and here’s what participants had to say:

  • THANK YOU!!!!! I share your vision!
  • This was so well done! You made us feel welcome and valued, and the information shared was amazing!!!! Can’t wait to use your resources!
  • Thank you! It was great! I hope to convince my school to create a semester course and I could absolutely do it with your resources.
  • Thank you. I have been to a lot of these [PD sessions] over the years. Too many times I felt that they  [organizers] were asking use to do all the work so they could benefit from our work. You have flipped this concept and showed what you have created to help me help my students.”

FinCamp has been developed with the 4Cs in mind: collaboration, curation, creation and content:

  • Collaboration: Teachers have multiple opportunities to collaborate. Pre-conference, teachers provide answers to complete this sentence: “I wish I knew what other teachers do about…” What follows during FinCamp is a facilitated conversation among small groups of educators who share how they address issues that matter to them. We keep the breakfast and lunch sessions open to provide teachers with additional opportunities for networking and conversation.
  • Curation: Educators complete an NGPF Scavenger Hunt which is focused on finding resources that they can use in their classrooms (Most find 5 or more during this session!). Educators share their plans for how to incorporate these resources into their lessons.
  • Creation: What could be a better use of PD time than to have teachers walk away with an activity they can use with their class? In this session, educators identify an NGPF activity to supplement their existing curriculum and then find additional resources to prepare the students for the activity.
  • Content: Educators complete a pre-conference survey to identify content areas they want a “deeper dive” in. We design several sessions to fill in those content gaps. These sessions include information on the topic (e.g, investing) as well as trends in that area (robo-advising or index investing) and NGPF resources that can be used to further student understanding.

When we asked teachers what session was most valuable, their varied responses show how the workshop met their needs in a variety of ways:

  • “I wish I knew what other teachers do about….”: “The free-wheeling discussion about what other teachers are doing on different topics was great. (The entire workshop has been valuable!)”
  • Budgeting with Roommates: “I enjoyed the Budgeting with Roommates because it incorporated multiple points of view (common core) grounded by using the budget spreadsheet.”
  • NGPF Scavenger Hunt: “Scavenger Hunt because it allowed for complete exploration of the site and all of it’s amazing tools, (all of which are practical, doable and actually helpful for all students at all levels).”

Want to bring FinCamp to your state or region? Here’s what you need to know:

  • NGPF underwrites full cost of the event, including substitute reimbursement (if required)
  • NGPF manages the PD from “soup to nuts” including programming, site logistics, food, pre and post-survey and teacher communication
  • We need your help publicizing the event so we can get 30-40 teachers to attend

Contact Laura@nextgenpersonalfinance.org to get started on the path to bringing NGPF’s FinCamp to your community!

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.

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