Financial Footings

3rd - 6th Grade Curriculum


Early childhood learning is vital to the growth and learning capabilities of children as they age. In partnership with Financial Beginnings, our third through sixth grade curriculum will help continue to introduce children to the World of Personal Finance.

Financial Footings 3-6 is the second half of a two-step program that includes specific activities and learning objectives tailored to those ages. Students are familiarized with key vocabulary words and introduced to setting and achieving goals, how to write checks and the benefits of investing their money. Each lesson is designed to work for all learners-making concepts so fun they won’t even know they are learning.


Download a PDF version of this guide, or keep scrolling to read.


Chapter 1

Money Matters

Key Concepts

Money is what we use to obtain the things we need.

Trading and bartering are what people did before money existed. It is a way of getting something we need by trading it for something we have. For example, you could trade your apple for your friends banana.

Producers are people who make things others need and want. For example, someone produced a pencil that you are using today.

Consumers are people who use the things others produce. You are the consumer of a pencil you are using today.

Supply is how much of something is available.

Demand is how much of something people want.

Supply and Demand work together. For example, if you have 3 hats and your friend wants 2 of them the supply is 3 and the demand is 2. But it works the other way as well. Sometimes the demand is greater than the supply, meaning sometimes people want more of a product than what is available

Draw a Dollar Bill

You have seen a one-dollar bill many times, you may have even used one today. But do you remember what it looks like? I mean what it really looks like? Here is our chance to take a closer look.

Click here to open an interactive drawing board.

After opening the interactive drawing board, click “open” in the top right corner of your screen:

1. Draw the front of a one-dollar bill.

2. Without looking at a real dollar-bill, try to remember as many details as possible.

3. Remember to save and download your drawing. Submit your drawing to and we will post it to our website!

It Cost You What?

Work on this activity with a parent or guardian.

Did you know the value of your money changes over time? No, we don't change the actual number on the coins or bills, but what that coin or bill can buy changes. This is called inflation. You can learn about inflation firsthand through this fun activity.

1. Ask your grandparent, if possible, how much the various items listed below cost when they were your age.

2. Ask your parent or guardian how much these same items cost when they were your age.

3. Now research how much these items cost today.

4. Use the chart below to fill in this information.

Item Grandparent Parent/Guardian You
Gallon of Milk
Candy Bar
Movie Ticket
Loaf of Bread
Postage Stamp
Gallon of Gas
Cup of Coffee
Did the cost of items go up or down over the years?
What items went up or down the most? By how much did it go up or down?


Chapter 2


Key Concepts

A bank is a financial institution that provides accounts and services to help people manage their money. A bank is a for-profit business that pays taxes.

A credit union is similar to a bank with accounts and services to help its members manage their money, but Credit Unions are not-for-profit organizations.

A savings account can be opened at a bank or credit union and used to store the money that you want to save for something in the future. Most savings accounts earn interest.

Interest is the fee to borrow money. If you borrow money, you pay interest. If someone borrows money from you, they pay interest.

A checking account can be opened at a bank or credit union and used to store the money that you use on a regular basis for things such as groceries, gas, and bills.

You deposit money when you put it into your bank or credit union.

You withdrawal money when you take it out of your bank or credit union.

The account balance is how much money you have in your account. It's very important to keep track of this.


Banks & Credit Unions

Do you know the differences between banks and credit unions? Put an X in the correct space for each item on the left.

  Bank Credit Union Both
Checking Account
Savings Account
Credit Account

Make a Deposit


Let's put some money into our bank account! As a class, fill out the deposit slip with the
following amounts:
Cash= $13.17
Check= $27.29
Check= $43.50


Banking Jeopardy!

Let's see how well you remember the things we have covered so far.


Check It Out

Do you know the different parts of a check?

1.Place the correct number from the key below in the boxes on the check.

1. Check number
2. Date
3. Who you are paying the check to
4. Amount in numbers
5. Amount in words
6. Memo (note to remind you of the reason for the check)
7. Signature
8. Account number
9. Routing number

Joe Moneybags
123 Highstreet
Anytown, USA

Pay to the
order of    


A22222222A 000 111 555C 1027

Do Your Research

Take this activity home and work on it with your parent or guardian.

Choosing a bank or credit union is a big deal. You want to make sure that the bank or credit
union will fit your needs and your personality. With your parent or a guardian, practice doing some research.

  • Go to a bank or credit union's website or give them a call to answer the following questions:
Question Answer
Do you offer free checking accounts?
What are the requirements for a free checking account?
Do you offer free savings accounts?
What are the requirements for a free savings account?
Does an ATM/Debit Card come with account?
Are there any other banks where I can use the ATM without a fee?
What is the fee for using another bank’s ATM?
What is the interest earned on a savings account?
Do you have any special accounts for students?

Chapter 3

Smart Future

Key Concepts

A Credit Report is your financial report card. Instead of letter grades, you are given a score between 300 and 850, this is your Credit Score. Instead of measuring how well you do in school, it measures how well you do at paying back the money you borrow and how well you manage your money. If you pay your bills on time and do not borrow more than you can pay back you will have a good credit score.

A Debit Card looks like a credit card, but it actually accesses your own money. If you use
your debit card the money is taken right out of your checking account.

A Credit Card allows you to borrow money from the bank or lending institution whenever
you want, but you have to pay it back. If you don't pay it back fast you will be charged extra
money we call interest. The interest rate you are charged per year is called Annual Percentage Rate (APR). With a credit card you have a limit as to how much you can spend.

A loan is when you borrow money from a bank, credit union, or other financial institution. Loans are usually used for larger purchases such as college, a car, or a house. With a loan, you must pay it back within a certain time and pay a certain interest rate. You should know what the interest rate and the terms (how long you have to pay it back) are before getting the

Interest is the fee to borrow money. If you borrow money you pay interest as with a credit
card or loan. If someone borrows money from you they pay interest. This is similar to the interest you receive on your savings account. You are essentially lending your money to the bank or credit union so they can offer others loans and they, in return, pay you interest.

Compounding Interest can work for you or against you depending on whether you are
saving or borrowing money. Compounding interest is when interest grows on interest. For
example, you put $100 into an investment that earns 10% interest per year. $100 x 10% =
$110. At the end of the first year you have $110. But in year 2 you will earn 10% on the entire $110 (not just the original $100). $110 x 10% = $121.

The Rule of 72 shows you roughly how long it will take for your investment to double. Let us say that you saved $1,000 to invest. You invest this money in an account that pays you 8%
interest. Here is how you calculate the Rule of 72: 72/8 = 9 years. That means that your
$1,000 will double every 9 years.


Let's Buy a Car

You may not be old enough to drive a car, but let's pretend that you are 18 years old . You
really need a car to drive to work, but you do not have enough money to pay for it completely.

You will need to get a loan. Let's see how getting a loan works for someone with good credit and someone with bad credit.

1. Everyone is going to buy the same car.

2. Every student has good credit, but the presenter has bad credit.

$10,000 Car – 3 Year Loan
Students 790 Credit Score  3.5% APR  $293 per month
Presenter  550 Credit Score  17% APR $357 per month



How much money do students save per month by having good credit?

Monthly Payment for Presenter - Monthly Payment for Students = Saved Per Month
- =

How much money do students save per year by having good credit?

Saved Per Month x Months Per Year = Saved Per Year
X =

How much money do the students save total?

Saved Per Year x Years of Loan = Total Saved
x =

Why is it better to have good credit?

Rule of 72

Now that you have worked so hard for your money, it is time to let your money work for you.
Let's see how the money you have invested can grow.

1. You have saved $1,000 to place into an investment.

2. The investment grows by 8% every year.

3. Calculate how fast your money will double using the Rule of 72.

4 . Place the average age of the class in the first box on the left (your presenter will help you
with this).

5. Add your answer to The Rule of 72 (below) to the average age of the class and put that
amount in the second box on the left.

6. Keep doing this until you have ages in all of the boxes on the left.

7. Now calculate how much money you have for each age knowing that your money doubles each time and place that number in the correct box to the right.

The Rule of 72:

72 ÷ 8 = _____

Your Investments Working For You

2. How much money did you end up with (bottom right box)

3. How much interest did you earn (use the formula below)?

Amount in bottom right of box - Amount you originally invested = Amount you earned
- =

Why Wait?


Take this activity home and work on it with your parent or guardian.

It is never too late to start saving your money for the future, but it sure does help if you start early. Complete the following activity with a parent or a guardian to see how much better it is to start saving early.

1. Assume both you and your parent or guardian invest money in an investment account earning 9% interest.

2. The Rule of 72 tells you how many years it will take for your money to double in an investment.

3. Answer the questions and fill out the chart using the Rule of 72, which has already
been completed below.

The Rule of 72:

72 ÷ 8 = _____

1. Looking at the chart below, whom do you think will have more money at around
65 years old?

2. Fill in the amounts at each age for you and your parent/guardian.

3. How old are you when you reach $48,000? How about your parent/guardian? How old
are you when you reach $188,000?

4. How much do you have when you are in your forties? How about your parent/guardian?

5. Is it better to start young with less money or older with more?

You Age $Amount
In 8 Years
In 16 Years
In 24 Years
In 32 Years
In 40 Years
In 48 Years


Your Parent/Guardian Age $Amount
In 8 Years
In 16 Years
In 24 Years
In 32 Years
In 40 Years
In 48 Years

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