By Lex Adelman, IBA Marketing/Communications Intern
In elementary school the best days were field trip days because nothing was better than getting out of class to go somewhere new and exciting. Titonka State Bank (TSB) had a “Bank Day” and invited fifth-grade students to visit their Forest City branch for a field trip after they had completed the EverFi financial literacy course online.
“Bank Day” was a hit with not only the students but also those working for TSB, because they were able to see how much the students had learned about finance. Jan Anderson, who works for Titonka State Bank said, “The students enjoyed seeing how the bank worked and asked a lot of questions based on what they learned.” The program was able to give the students enough background information so they could ask detailed questions and continue to learn throughout the visit. The field trip was so much fun for everyone involved that TSB has already invited a summer school group for another visit.
Everfi, the online learning program that TSB has sponsored, has financial literacy programming geared toward both elementary and high school students. Between TSB’s three branches they are able to provide the programming to six different elementary and high schools between Algona, Forest City and other cities in northern Iowa.
While fifth-graders were invited to tour the bank, high schoolers also benefited from EverFi. By completing the program, they are able to meet their math and ELA Common Core standards, which are required for graduation. They are taught about things such as how to apply for loans, good credit vs. bad credit and what a credit score means. Anderson hopes the skills the students learn through the program will be useful in the students’ lives after graduation.
The bank has received very positive feedback from parents, teachers and students since the start of the program. “It’s nice for teachers because they don’t have to come up with curriculum,” said Jan, as EverFi has done a good job of keeping the information interesting and fun.
TSB is committed to supporting their community and plans to continue funding the Everfi program for the next three years. The results are worth the financial investment in the program, says Anderson. Anderson is also looking forward to more excited faces as students visit for the next “Bank Day” field trip.