Elementary School Programs

“It’s never too early to start building students’ financial literacy. We believe that creating foundations that build upon each other over time is the key to having graduates go on feeling really prepared for handling financial matters as adults. So starting as early as kindergarten and having a dose each year that stacks on top of their foundation of knowledge we believe is important.” -Chris Gdowski, Superintendent, Adams 12 Five Star Schools

Each elementary school program involves four to five lessons of 30 to 45 minutes each, which can be delivered all in one day or one lesson at a time over multiple days. All programs are offered at no cost to schools.

Volunteers presenting JA elementary school programs can find helpful tips on our Classroom Resources page.

Classroom Programs

JA Ourselves® uses storybook characters in read-aloud and hands-on activities to introduce the role people play in an economy. Through engaging, volunteer-led activities, young students learn about individual choices, money, the importance of saving and giving, and the value of work. Key Concepts: Earn, Save, Money, Coin Recognition, Needs, Wants, Decision Making
1st Grade
JA Our Families® discusses the role of families in the local economy. The program introduces the concept of needs and wants and explores the ways families plan for and acquire goods and services. Students analyze their own skills to determine ways they can support their families. Key Concepts: Family, Needs, Wants, Jobs, Businesses, Maps, Symbols, Skill, Save, Earn
“I have participated in Junior Achievement for many years in my first grade classroom. My students love all of the activities and the materials that go along with them. The activities are hands-on and interactive. When I am teaching about financial literacy and other social studies topics throughout the year I find myself referring back to our Junior Achievement activities that we did in the Fall.” -Janell Collins, North Nor Elementary School
2nd Grade
Through JA Our Community®, students are immersed in the daily life of their community – the people who work there, the money decisions they make, the flow of the community’s economy, and the importance of being an involved and responsible community member. They are introduced to the types of skills and knowledge necessary to be a worker in the community: the experience of working as a team in a pizza shop, buying and selling of goods and services in exchange for money, getting paid and paying taxes, exercising their civic duty to make decisions for the good of the community, and using digital tools. Key Concepts: Businesses, Jobs, Community, Skill, Products and Services, Government, Taxes, Decision Making, Voting, Bank, Money, Coin Recognition
“Junior Achievement inspired and prepared our second grade class to begin their journey into our ever-changing global economy. They helped our second graders understand their role in an economic community as individuals, entrepreneurs, and consumers. They were able to successfully incorporate engaging, real-life lessons that made financial literacy both fun and enjoyable for students and teachers alike. I can honestly say that it is because of the well-delivered and created lessons offered by Junior Achievement our second graders now have taken a great first step on their way of becoming financially literate.” – Joey Peplinski, Eagle County Charter Academy
3rd Grade
JA Our City® introduces students to financial literacy, including how people manage their money and the importance of economic exchange within a city. Students learn the role of an entrepreneur by designing and constructing a pop-up business. Key Concepts: Personal Finances, Decision Making, Banking, Payment Methods, Consumers, Entrepreneurship, Deposit, Checks, City, City Planning, Zoning
“Wow. What a treat it was to have our JA volunteer come in to help my students with the concepts of community, commerce, banking, and credit, and loans, and entrepreneurship. Thank you for this fun and engaging service.” – Danny Ferry, Avon Elementary School
4th Grade
JA Our Region® introduces the relationship between the natural, human and capital resources found in different regions, and explores regional businesses that produce goods and services. Students operate a hypothetical business to understand the fundamental tasks performed by a business owner. Key Concepts: Regions, Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Resources (Natural, Human, Capital), Goods and Services, Problem Solving, Expense, Revenue, Profit and Loss, Supply, Interdependence, Global Trade
“The fourth grade students truly love the Junior Achievement program – it allows them to experience the entrepreneurial world in a fun and meaningful way. The higher-level concepts of goods, services, opportunity costs and more become real to them, and not just abstract vocabulary words.” – Lisa Coalwell, Big Thompson Elementary School
5th Grade
JA Our Nation® provides practical information about the need for employees who can meet the demands of the 21st century job market, particularly high-growth, high-demand jobs. By program’s end, students will understand the skills, especially in science, technology, engineering, and math, that will make their futures brighter. Key Concepts: Free Enterprise, Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Resources, STEM Skills, Interview Skills, Supply and Demand, High-Growth Jobs, Soft Skills, Specialization, Global Trade
JA More Than Money® (3rd-5th Grade)
JA More Than Money introduces students to financial literacy and entrepreneurship, and to social studies learning objectives that include money-management skills, goods and services, and global markets. Students learn how to manage money and start a business. Key Concepts: Banking, Income and Earnings, Deposit, Withdrawal, Interest, Entrepreneurship, Business Plan, Advertising, Lending, Decision Making, Expense, Profit and Loss, Trade, Imports and Exports, Global Trade
Our Impact

2022-2023 School Year

Students Reached
Schools Reached
Districts Reached