Posted January 8, 2018
Many community members shared their expertise with Plymouth School District students this fall, including 23 who helped at the second Plymouth High School Reality Check.
Reality Check is a fun, interactive financial literacy simulation for PHS juniors and seniors to learn about the "realities" of life after high school or college. Held in the PHS library the morning of Dec. 14, it gave students the opportunity to make lifestyle and budget decisions similar to those they will make as adults.
To prepare for Reality Check, students selected an occupation and were assigned a "life status" based on their career area of interest. Participants were able to:
- Learn why financial planning skills, goal setting, and decision making are so important to their futures.
- Learn the relevance of what has been taught in school and the impact financial literacy has on their future.
- Examine their attitudes and understanding about career choices and earning potential and the role those concepts play in quality of life.
- Work with community and business members, teachers, and administrators in an action-oriented setting that has the power to change student perceptions about their future.
Accordingly, the event relied heavily on community volunteers to staff booths representing real-life businesses, such as housing, transportation, utilities, food, child care, etc. Students navigated through the Reality Check booths and managed their personal financial resources to pay for one month of life's necessities while making choices about what additional products and services to purchase. Throughout the activity, students kept track of their finances in a check register.
Participants in the December 2017 Reality Check included:
- Terri Williams of Acuity Insurance
- Megan Kerscher-Walsh of American Orthodontics
- Anna Montgomery of the Boys & Girls Club of Sheboygan County
- Tammy Matzdorf of Consumer Counseling Credit
- Lori Plate of Johnsonville
- Jennifer Rands of Kohler Credit Union
- Naomi Sehloff of Kohler Credit Union
- Cora Denamur of Kohler Credit Union
- Laura Gabrielse of Kohler Credit Union
- Sue Lisowe of Kohler Credit Union
- Vicent Arenal of Kohler Credit Union
- Mary Richter of National Exchange Bank & Trust
- James Olson of Olson Funeral Home
- John Nelson of Pleasant View Reality
- Krisi Kaiser of SCHBA
- Jeane Sager of St. Vincent de Paul
- Marge Ausloos of St. Vincent de Paul
- Jerry Matzdorf of The Benefits Company
- Kirk Larson of Waldo State Bank
- Debbie Reichert of Wisconsin Bank & Trust
- Rebecah Wickert-Carini of Wisconsin Bank & Trust
- Frank Barth of WPPI
- Thomas Gross, retired from the Sheboygan Area School District
The following special guests also visited our schools this fall:
- Dr. Brandon Debbink, a large animal veterinarian from Dairy Doctors, visited Horizon second-grade classrooms as part of their unity on communities to talk about his path to becoming a vet and show tools he uses in his job every day.
- Brianna Huesterberg from Mental Health America Sheboygan County conducted a Mindfulness Program unit with PHS health students.
- Mary Jones of Sheboygan County 911 Dispatch talked with Fairview first-graders in Jessica Prusow’s classroom about when people need to call 911.
- Junior Achievement volunteers visited Riverview the fifth-grade classrooms taught by Josh Batzner and Gabrielle Fote this fall.
- Brett Killion, associate professor of accounting at Lakeland University, spoke to PHS accounting classes about the accounting profession and the college accounting curriculum. Eric Nygaard, a 2014 PHS graduate, joined Mr. Killion and spoke to the advanced accounting students about his experience in the accounting program at Lakeland University and his future career plans.
- Kohler Credit Union employees visit Riverview fifth- and sixth-grade classrooms on Fridays all year to discuss financial literacy and all aspects of money, including savings, credit, bonds, checks and budgets.
- Tracey Leonard, a personal chef with Rosemary Gourmet, talked with PHS culinary arts students.
- Authors Juana Medina and Sara Pennypacker visited Horizon Elementary School when they were in town for the Sheboygan Children’s Book Festival in October.
- David Nicholson, director of product development at Johnsonville Sausage, spoke to the PHS Principles of Business class about The Johnsonville Way, the commitment that Johnsonville has to become the best company in the world and to challenge the members of their team to stretch, grow, and excel. The class was studying management structures, and Mr. Nicholson explained the coach/team concept used at Johnsonville.
- PHS graduate and professional actor and comedian Tim Stoltenberg worked with the Jolly Pranksters comedy team.
- A speaker from UW-Green Bay spoke to Riverview seventh-graders Dec. 19 about the Vikings as part of a unit on exploration.
• Check out the Community Engagement section of our District Report Card to learn more about opportunities for community members to volunteer in our schools.