Extension offers Real Money, Real World


Lynchburg teachers Brenda Keltner, JoHeather Arnett and Michelle Truman partnered recently with OSU Extension’s 4-H Youth Development Educator Kathy Bruynis to present “Real Money, Real World” to more than 50 freshman students.

Real Money, Real World, a signature program offered through OSU Extension, is an active, hands-on experience that gives young people the opportunity to make lifestyle and budget choices similar to those they will make as adults. They study how occupations will affect their income, learn about payroll deductions by their employers, how to use a savings and checking account, and how to make life choices.

The student’s assume the role of a 25-year-old adult who is the sole income provider for a family. They receive an occupation, monthly salary, and the number of children (if any) in their family. At the end of the six classroom lesson the students complete a real life simulation. During the simulation students interacted with local businesses where they would spend their salaries on “real life” budget items including housing, utilities, groceries, insurance, childcare and transportation. Throughout this activity, students keep track of their finances and attempt to complete the simulation with a positive balance.

Students learn what they can afford and what they cannot afford on their income. Many students commented on how much it costs to raise children and that they didn’t realize all the bills their parents have to pay.

Local community representatives included: Highland County commissioner s office, First State Bank, Merchants Bank, NCB, People’s Bank, Southern Hills Bank, Hamilton Insurance, State Farm Insurance/Amatha Farrens, 4-H Advisors, and OSU Extension educators from Highland and Fayette counties.

Submitted by Kathy Bruynis, Extension educator, 4-H youth development.

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