JA Personal Finance®

JA Personal Finance<sup>®</sup>

Through JA Personal Finance Blended Model, students experience the interrelationship between today's financial decisions and future financial freedom. To achieve financial health and wellness, they learn about money-management strategies, including earning, employment and income, budgeting, savings, credit and debt, consumer protection, smart shopping, risk management, and investing. At the conclusion of this program, students will be able to identify how their personal finances affect their quality of life. They will understand how their financial choices will be the basis of how they get what they want and need.


JA Personal Finance Blended Model consists of eight 45-minute sessions with Additional Opportunities offered throughout. The program has two implementation options—basic or advanced.
  • Basic implementation includes Sessions One–Five delivered by the volunteer.
  • Advanced implementation includes Sessions One–Five delivered by the volunteer and Sessions Six–Eight delivered by the teacher or volunteer.
Basic or advanced implementation depends on educator requirements and correlations to local standards. Contact your local JA Area staff to find out which implementation will be used.

All JA programs are designed to support the skills and competencies identified by the Partnership for 21st Century Skills. JA programs also correlate to state standards in social studies, English, and mathematics, and to Common Core State Standards.

Pillars of Student Success Entrepreneurship:  Financial-Literacy:  Work-Readiness: 
Program Implementation Program Grade-Level
Classroom-Based High School
Program Concepts Program Skills
Benefits versus costs, budgeting, compound interest, consequences, cost of living, credit, credit card fraud, credit reporting and rating, debt, delayed gratification, earnings, education, expense tracking, financial management, identity theft, income, information mining, interest, investing, job skills, limited resources, liquidity, maximizing earnings, opportunity cost, pawnshop, payday loan, priorities, rent-to-own, return on investment, reward, risk, saving, savings plan, unlimited wants, variable and discretionary expenses Analyze and evaluate data from multiple sources, car buying, comparing results, comparison shopping, computer skills, create savings plan, critical thinking, decision making, disputing unauthorized charges on a credit card, estimating, evaluate the risk and reward of an opportunity, evaluating online resources, evaluating options, evaluating personal skills, grocery shopping, interpreting analogy, long-term planning, online research, personal inventory, planning, predicting outcomes, presentation skills, prioritizing, proactive planning, problem solving, recognizing scams and fraud, requesting and checking credit report, research, saving and investing, sorting, teamwork, tracking expenses, weighing costs and benefits

Program Sessions

Session One: Earning, Employment, and Income (volunteer-led)

Students learn that healthy personal finances require planning and managing. Students begin to analyze the financial implications of educational and career choices as a basis for understanding the relationship between earnings and personal finance.

Session Two: Budgeting (volunteer-led)

Students investigate the importance of budgeting and how to plan for staying within a budget.

Session Three: Savings (volunteer-led)

Students analyze the role that saving plays in their personal finances. They recognize that having a healthy savings plan is necessary in all phases of life, but is especially critical for big-ticket items and emergencies.

Session Four: Credit and Debt (volunteer-led)

Students explore the importance of credit and identify the outcomes of wise and poor uses of credit. Students role-play as lenders to evaluate risk and make decisions about giving credit.

Session Five: Consumer Protection (volunteer-led)

Students investigate factors that may pose a threat to their finances and learn ways they can protect themselves through vigilance and making smart choices.

Session Six: Smart Shopping (volunteer- or teacher-led)

Students explore making informed purchasing decisions to maximize their buying power. They work in groups to compare prices in a simulated shopping experience.

Session Seven: Risk Management (volunteer- or teacher-led)

Students investigate risks that can lead to financial loss and practice applying appropriate risk management strategies in scenarios.

Session Eight: Investing (volunteer- or teacher-led)

Students explore investing and work in groups to simulate evaluating investments with different levels of risk and reward.