Lesson 9.3: Social Studies Connection

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Children $ave for the Future

Pie chart indicating 35% Doing Chores, 65% Gifts

Many adults think that children spend their money as soon as they get it. Some young people may spend all the money they get, but not 9-year-old twins Gabriel and Dylan Greene.

For three years, Gabriel and Dylan took part in Save for America. Save for America is a program that teaches children how important it is to save money. It also teaches them how to save money.

Recently, 90,000 children from 750 schools took part in Save for America. Combined, those children saved $1 million. Since the program began 12 years ago, children have saved nearly $50 million!

A School Program

One school that takes part in Save for America is the Setauket Elementary School in Setauket, New York. Every two weeks the school has Banking Day. On that day, nearly 200 children, including Gabriel and Dylan, deposit money. Each of these boys deposited about $5 in his bank account. At one point, Gabriel had saved $350, and Dylan had saved $340.

Valuable Lessons

The children who participate in Save for America learn valuable lessons. Dylan explained that he has learned that saving money for the future can help him get the things he wants. He says that knowing how to save money will help him to have a better life as an adult. Save for America also helps children sharpen their math skills. Gabriel said the program has improved his math, especially in addition, subtraction, and multiplication.

Ways to Spend Money

The children who take part in Save for America can use their money for a variety of things. Gabriel once withdrew some of his savings to buy a new scooter. However, he's saving most of his money for college.

Dylan has a special reason for saving. “You should save up all the money that you need,” he said, “and you should give some of the money [to] the children in America that need more [food, clothes, and other necessities].”

Word Wise

Bring together to make a whole: My sister and I combined our money to buy a DVD.

Put money into a bank account: I save coins in a piggy bank, and I deposit bills in a savings account.

Something that is worth a lot of money: You should keep valuable things, like jewelry, in a safe place.

Take back: Each boy withdraws money from the bank to buy something he needs.

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Two of the vocabulary words, deposit and withdraw, have opposite meanings. Words that have opposite meanings are called antonyms.

Look in the Word Box for an antonym for each underlined word in a sentence below. Then write the antonyms to complete the sentences.

  • divide
  • withdraw
  • wrong
  • combine
  • spending
  • sells
  • valuable
  • savings
  1. An answer that is not right is                               .
  2. Instead of saving some of her money, Jen is                                it all.
  3. Let's not separate our collections. Let's                                them into one big collection.
  4. Mr. Canto buys T-shirts for his store, and then he                                them.

Data Hunt

You can make up a savings program of your own. Here's how one fourth-grader did it even without having a bank account.

Tori keeps track of her money in a table. Each week, she adds the amount she earns from recycling cans to her $5 allowance. Then she divides the sum into 3 equal parts. The first part is for spending on school things. The second part is for spending on fun things. The third part is for savings.

Week How much I have
(Allowance + Recyling)
Spend on Savings
School Fun things
1 $5 + $2.35 = $7.35 $2.45 $2.45 $2.45
2 $5 + $3.55 =
3 $5 + $2.95 =
4 $5 + $1.75 =
Total Savings for 4 Weeks:
  1. Complete Tori's chart for each of Weeks 2, 3, and 4.
  2. How much did Tori save for the 4 Weeks?