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Students Inspired to Get "Mad About Money!"

Affinity Plus Foundation Sponsors Live Theatre Performances

ST. PAUL, MINN. (October 18, 2013) – Beginning October 21, thousands of students in Minnesota will be treated to performances of Mad About Money II: Pay Yourself First! This unique and entertaining program – featuring live, educational theatre performances by professional actors – also includes print and Internet curriculum designed to help students create good habits around earning, saving and spending money. Sponsored by the Affinity Plus Foundation, the production will play in 10 schools throughout the state.

Mad About Money II: Pay Yourself First, produced by The National Theatre for Children (NTC), features two professional actors who play a variety of characters in a 40-minute program for the entire school. Students learn important lessons about their money and buying habits through four comical and informative sketches, including:

• Wages minus deductions equals take-home pay

• Saving and investing always have some risk involved

• Don’t let advertisers make your decisions for you

• What is “opportunity cost?”

While the performance and educational content is completely scripted, the shows are built to incorporate improvisational acting. At the beginning of each scene, actors solicit information from the audience that is then humorously – and extemporaneously – integrated into the show. “The comedy format really captures the imagination of the students,” says Dave Larson, interim President and CEO for Affinity Plus. “They get so excited about hearing their ideas integrated into the performance that they don’t even realize how much they’re actually learning about good personal finance habits.”

Following the performances, students return to their classrooms to complete additional activities and digital classroom games that further reinforce the financial literacy concepts from the show. Combining live, educational theatre with interactive classroom activities and homework assignments is a powerful educational tool. “The Affinity Plus Foundation is dedicated to bettering the quality of life through financial literacy--helping people before debt becomes a problem. We also recognize the importance of educating students and providing the knowledge they can use to be successful later in life. Live theatre delivers these messages in a unique and engaging way, and captures the students’ attention from the first moment the actors step on stage. We’re honored to sponsor these programs and allow schools to educate their students through them, free of charge,” states Larson.

The Mad About Money program and format was the focus of a study conducted by financial literacy researcher Dr. Lewis Mandell. His study provided empirical evidence that NTC-style productions—live educational theatre combined with print and classroom activities – positively influence student attitudes on personal finance. For a copy of Dr. Mandell’s study, please contact NTC.

About Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union

Affinity Plus is a not-for-profit cooperative that puts people first above profits. We are committed to empowering consumers – for knowledge, for understanding and to know there are alternatives that focus on the success of people, not the bottom line. Members of Affinity Plus receive maximum value through competitive rates, minimal fees, and unique, member-centric products and programs. Affinity Plus is the largest credit union in Minnesota with state-based assets and has 27 branches located throughout the state. With over $1.6 billion in assets, Affinity Plus is based in St. Paul and is owned by over 176,000 members. Through a broad range of eligibility criteria, almost anyone can become a member of Affinity Plus. Additional information is available at http://www.affinityplus.org.

About The National Theatre for Children

NTC is the largest touring educational theatre company in the world. Since 1978, NTC has successfully tackled one important issue after another including: financial literacy, electrical safety, water conservation, health care, smoking prevention, recycling, wise energy use, renewable energy, nutrition, and bullying prevention, (to name a few). Our educational outreach programs are entirely underwritten by corporate, non-profit and governmental sponsors who want to be associated with delivering healthy-living messages to students and their families. NTC performs approximately 7,000 times a year throughout the country, actively engaging 2.8 million students and parents through its programming: http://www.nationaltheatre.com

 

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