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Student excercise teaches money management skills

RHINELANDER, Wis. (WXPR) -- Teenagers learned money management lessons during an exercise at Rhinelander High School. Several juniors got to experience why they can’t always get money from their parents, and why they have to say no.

It’s called the Mad Money Financial Simulation. Students work with the income from their simulated job to see if they can budget items like food, child care, living expenses and savings using only the money they are given.

Jacob Froseth is working part time now and sees how that isn't enough to get by. "As a part time worker, you don't get as many hours as you would like to pay for the things you want and need."

Colton Fralick says what you have versus what you want can be very different. "I'm learning a lot of the real­ world finances and things we'd end up having to purchase that a lot of people think of when they are looking into how much money they have."

Diane Sowinski from Ripco Credit Union was helping students learn to write a check properly. "Parents pay for the bills and they don't really realize the concept of 'you get this much, you spend this much is left. They think you just spend, spend, and see what's left at the end."

Business Education Teacher Pat Kubeny says the set up the simulation based on real­ world lives. He says they don't want to scare the students, but give them examples of how to overcome limited funds. "They think it is incredibly helpful. We do an evaluation at the end. Every year we try to improve and make it a little more realistic." The Mad Money Financial Simulation is sponsored by the Rhinelander School District and the education support group Partners in Education.