Students schooled up in money skills

When the 2013 school year was winding down, Year 10 students at Aorere College were ramping up their money skills by taking part in a four-day financial literacy programme, run by the school’s Business Department.

Head of Department, Mary Kerrigan, came up with the idea to develop the programme following a workshop she’d attended run by the Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income.

“From the workshop it was clear there are issues with schools picking up and running with financial literacy in their classrooms. Teachers didn’t feel confident to teach the content meaning students were missing out on learning these essential life skills.

“Once the seniors go on study leave, most schools are relatively quiet and I thought this could be the ideal time to run a financial literacy programme for Year 10 students.”

Working with Clem Ludlow from the Commission, they developed the programme containing modules on income, spending and budgeting. Mornings focused on theory-based content and afternoons were filled with guest speakers and money-related games.

“We had 320 students rotate through the different modules over four days. The mix of theory, games and speakers kept the students interested and engaged, and 87% of students surveyed had very positive feedback and recommended the programme ran again this year.

“We had a number of partners involved during the four days which really added to the programme.  Rabena Tanielu from the YWCA delivered the spending module, Change Labs facilitators delivered presentations from ASB’s GetWise programme, the students played Bamzonia and Gumption and Money Pacific provided a free calendar to all the students.”

Mary says another great outcome from the programme was that teachers who were nervous to teach the material to start with, found they did have skills and knowledge in the area and could usually answer any questions students had.

“Sixty teachers took part and their feedback was really positive about how the programme was put together and the ease in which they could deliver it.”

Following the success of the programme Aorere College has committed to running it every year near the end of term. Mary and Clem are developing the programme further to make a template that other schools can pick up and drop into their own classes.

“We want to share the resource with other schools via the TKI website and hope to have it online by the end of February, so keep an eye out for it,” Mary says.

Watch the Video:


Free Financial Literacy Workshop for Teachers

Teaching Financial Literacy in the New Zealand curriculum;  a free Workshop for classroom teachers supported by the Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income and facilitated by Rick Whalley from Core Education.

Date: Thursday April 10

Time: 9.30am – 3.30pm (Morning tea and lunch included)

4.30pm – 6.00pm – Cocktail style Formal Launch of the Financial Capability progressions  ( optional event)

Venue: The Cube, Level 2, ASB North Wharf, 12 Jellicoe Street, Auckland

Registration – Click this Link: Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income

Required by: Friday April 4


Financial Literacy; Skills for life. Developing our students’ financial capability

 Young people face a myriad of financial decisions from an early age. Empowering and equipping them with the tools they need to make sound financial decisions is vital in our fast paced world. This practical, hands-on workshop will provide ideas and inspiration for primary and secondary teachers who are interested in helping students become more financially adept. You will also get the chance to experience working with the new financial capability progressions– and attend the launch event for these from 4.30 – 6.00pm.  You will also have the chance to hear from internationally acclaimed speaker Dom Thurbon.

The Workshop will explore:

  • The financial capability progressions which set out suggested curriculum based learning outcomes across a range of learning areas.
  •  The links with financial capability and the New Zealand Curriculum; including the key competencies and learning areas
  •  The ways in which the financial capability progression themes of Managing Money, Setting Goals and Managing Risk can be woven into your everyday classroom teaching and learning.

You will also have the opportunity to hear from a range of presenters including teachers involved in financial literacy programmes in their schools, as well as educators involved with the development of financial capability of our young people. 

Keynote Speaker

The Opening address for the day will be given by internationally acclaimed speaker Dom Thurbon.

Dominic Thurbon is co-founder and Chief Creative Officer at ChangeLabs. A business leader ‘in the trenches’, he directs over 50 full-time researchers and facilitators (across three countries) in the design and delivery of multi-award winning behaviour change programmes that touch over 500,000 people each year. Most recently Dominic has been involved in the creation of Educator Impact, a revolutionary tool based on rigorous research into teacher effectiveness and development that is currently being rolled out in Australia.

Dominic has worked extensively in areas of behaviour and generational change, innovation and collaboration with clients around the world including Apple, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, the Commonwealth Bank and Lexus. Dominic holds a political science degree from the University of Sydney, and is a co-author of the White Papers Talent Magnets: Attracting Top Talent to Education and Game On: How Video Games Change Education.

As a world top-10 debater and internationally sought after keynote speaker, his dynamic style, deep research and real-world experience building a multinational business uniquely equip him to challenge and inspire teachers to help their students ‘get ahead financially’ .


You will also have the opportunity to meet the Bamzonia team in person for an in depth view of the programme and how it aligns with the New Zealand Curriculum: Financial Capabilities Progressions and the NZQA recently revised Unit Standards: Personal Financial Management. 


Aorere College lead the way with Financial Literacy

Aorere College, in Papatoetoe, are serious when it comes to teaching such an important subject as Financial Literacy – and they have developed a very creative programme of events to ensure the best results.

The teachers at Aorere are running an intensive four day Financial Literacy programme from 3rd to 6th December for their Year 10 students to really make an impact on their student’s skills and knowledge. The intention is that this new found knowledge will kindle an understanding of the importance of Financial Literacy throughout their lives and motivate them to be responsible with finances in them long term.

Over the 4 days, 320 the students are focusing on three core disciplines: Income, Spending, and Budgeting. Aorere realised that teaching this complex and serious life skill needs to be relevant and interesting. So they have looked at engaging their students with resources like Bamzonia, Gumption, and face to face education with ASB support.

Bamzonia is an online resource with interactive lessons, quizzes, and a 3D game where students can rebuild the economy of a devastated island community – and create the health wealth and happiness of the inhabitants.

Gumption is a highly entertaining and educational business board game that celebrates NZ enterprise, innovation, and business success.

The ASB Bank is supporting the programme by talking with the students about savings and budgeting with some of their specialised staff. The Commission for Financial Literacy Retirement and Income (CFLRI) have helped coordinate the week with Aorere – and the YWCA are also supporting with content and are advising on the Spending modules as they run a Fin Lit programme with their Future Leaders programme.

BNZ Bank Donate to Low Decile schools

Since the beginning of term 3 of 2013, BNZ Bank have been donating 50% of the user licence fees of Bamzonia for students in decile 1 – 4 schools. To date, about 1,000 year 9 and 10 students have taken up the offer in 25 schools – mainly in the Auckland region. With lessons now available for years 5 – 8 the offer has become even more attractive. Any teachers wishing to take up the BNZ Bank offer should contact the Bamzonia team at