OLD TAPPAN, N.J. — Students might not understand how memorizing the periodic table of contents will contribute to their everyday lives 10 years from now.
Knowing where to place the dollar signs on a check , however, could come in handy in the immediate future and beyond.
Representatives from Bank of New Jersey quizzed Northern Valley Old Tappan students in Cheryl Koehler's 9th grade business and personal finance class on the important topic last week, and discussed other aspects of financial literacy.
"Everything they're learning about banking will have an impact on their lives going forward when they get out of the classroom," said Allison Peterson, vice president and branch manager of Bank of New Jersey’s Haworth office. "There are so many questions that can be answered now instead of hitting them in the real world."
Jakia Sultana, the vice-president and branch manager of Harrington Park Bank of New Jersey, simplified the concept of a credit score by comparing it to the students' SAT scores.
One late payment — or one wrong question — and scores will dip.
"We take for granted that students know how to manage their money well and they really don't," said Koehler, who encourages her students to contribute between 3-7% of their yearly earnings to their 401Ks.
"When they start to get jobs they'll have the best practices in the back of their heads," she said.