Translate this page!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

"Dolla Dolla Bills Y'All" - ECP Community Bankers Share New Skills

6th-graders Jose and Ivan with some of their economics books
Photo Copyright Hasain Rasheed
Elmhurst Community Prep's WOW! Apprenticeship Showcase was also an opportunity for students to share more classroom-based learning. New to the Citizen Schools program this year was "Dolla Dolla Bills Y’All," a class about banking in which students set up an ECP Community Bank. On the night of the WOW!, the apprenticeship's 15 students had the chance to share the concept with community members and families.

During their apprenticeship's 11 weeks, with the help of instructors Jeannette Aames and Sarah Pratt (a volunteer) the 6th-graders set up a school bank at which every ECP student has an account and can cash in "DPA Bucks" earned by performing tasks that uphold the school motto of "Dream, Prepare, Achieve." 

In order to track school-wide earning and spending of DPA bucks, the young bankers have mastered a number of functions in Microsoft Excel, where all the account records are kept. They demonstrated all this and more for the community members who visited during the WOW! Showcase. (Other Citizen Schools apprenticeships on display at the Showcase included Google Art, Iron Chef, Let's Go Oakland, Urban Gardening, Girl Talk, LEGO Robotics, and many more!
"At the WOW! we had lots of parents asking us what the bank was all about," recalls 6th-grader Millium, "and we were answering all their questions. It went pretty well!"

ECP Community Bankers at the WOW! Showcase
"Every student had their own role," ex- plains his classmate Ivan, "and we worked really good as a team. [Learning these things now] is good because in high school and college we'll already know how to do them. We'll be able to do it right away. Also, we're learning how to communicate with each other."

6th-grader Jose concurs. "We're just getting more mature. It has helped us know how life is and how it is being an accountant."

During the WOW!, says Millium, "We were treated like adults – like businessmen."

The kids also appreciate that, like Pratt, many Citizen Schools instructors are volunteers. "It feels good to know they are helping students so we can learn more," says Ivan. "They’re doing it so they can teach and have fun – not to get paid."

"They're doing this to help others in the community," agrees Millium.

Building on the momentum of our apprenticeships, we hope to extend our students' experiential learning through several spring field trips – especially college tours. But due to steep state cuts, we must raise outside funds to offer these trips. You can make a tax-deductible donation online at or by mail to: "OSF/ECP," P.O. Box 27148, Oakland, CA 94602. Thank you for your support!

No comments:

Post a Comment