By: Dominique DeVivo, Danielle Groves, and Taylor Reed
A Reality Fair took place on March 23 for both juniors and seniors. The purpose of this activity was to learn to properly manage money with a budget that students were presented with at the beginning of the task. Several stations were set up around the gymnasium that gathered the student’s money for certain necessities crucial for living. Every student had a different occupation with a monthly different starting rate.
With this initial money, each student had to save wisely and efficiently. With limited time, the students went to every station and further decided what was the best option for them financially. Keep in mind everyone had different decisions that stemmed around the money presented at the beginning of the task, their credit score, and their family composition. By the end of the reality fair, some had extra funds while others had none. This put financial reality into perspective for the students, such as when to know a good stopping point for purchasing items.
Junior Chaslin Hoover noted that, “It was very helpful, especially since some of us did not know how to properly go about spending our money wisely.” Even though everyone had to participate in this event, some kids had a prior knowledge regarding money management. These students were able to give advice to others that may struggle with knowing where to start.
“I learned that maybe I should put off having kids for awhile,” laughed Alex Pherson.
School counselors Ms.Garda and Mrs.Othites were two major influencers in arranging this exercise. They brought in several different stations from Utilities to Banking, Insurance, Food and Grocery, and many more, all of which raised students’ financial awareness.
“I think the program is great and also an eye-opening experience to the students,” said Mrs. Othites. “As I was talking to the students, it was interesting to see how they handled situations like an additional child, a refrigerator that broke, or a tax refund. It was much like ‘real life’ and all unexpected things that come your way. It seemed to me that the students also enjoyed this experience.”
“I thought that it was a great interactive way for students to put their knowledge into practice as they worked through a monthly budget, complete with ‘curve balls’ that life can throw at you,” concluded Ms. Garda.