Hands on Banking: Adults Instructor Guide

The Wells Fargo Hands on Banking program is an interactive and engaging financial education program designed for self-paced individual learning and group use.  The instructor guide provides everything an instructor needs to lead participants through real-life scenarios, group discussions, and activities that encourage them to apply the lessons to their daily lives.  In addition to the Adults Instructor Guide, the website also has guides for Young Adults, Teens, and Kids.

Wells Fargo Bank NA
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Wells Fargo Bank NA
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Resource Type
Instructional Material
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Target Audience

Hands on Banking is an easy and enjoyable way to teach and learn the essentials of financial education: the basics of bank services, the importance of saving, smart money management, using credit responsibly, investing, wealth building, and more. Whether it’s opening a checking account, avoiding identity theft, paying for college, buying a home, or starting a small business, Hands on Banking provides real-world skills and knowledge everyone can use.

The Instructor Guide can be used alone or as an adjunct to the online/CD-ROM program; instructors are encouraged to review the program online or request a free CD-ROM. Even if participants will not experience the program online, gaining familiarity with the online program will help instructors present it more effectively. The most up to date content can always be found online athttp://www.handsonbanking.org.

Each topic in Hands on Banking has its own Instructor Guide that follows the organization of the online program and includes much of the same content.

 The Adults version of the Hands on Banking program includes nine topics:

  1. Basics of Bank Services
  2. Money Management Tools and Tips
  3. Protect Yourself Financially
  4. Using Credit to Your Advantage
  5. Planning Your Future
  6. Buying a Home
  7. Starting a Small Business
  8. Managing a Small Business
  9. Growing a Small Business

Each Instructor Guide includes a glossary, lesson introduction, lesson summary, activities, quizzes, discussion questions, handouts, tips for key concepts, and a library section with additional reference material.

Required Training
The instructor guide is self explanatory and can help educators prepare, extend or modify lessons, and assess participant progress. 
What the experts say

Hands on Banking (Adult) consists of four courses, a teachers’ guide, an on-screen calculator, a glossary, and additional articles for educators or students who want to learn more. The teachers guide gives the teacher background information in greater detail and in more complex language than would be useable in class.

The website has different sections for individual users: Adults, Young Adults, Teens, and Kids.  Each has an interface and topics designed for the age group. The topics in the adult module are all relevant for some adults but not relevant for all adults.  They range from Money Management and Credit to Buying a Home and Starting a Business.  Even though there may be no students who are actually ready to purchase a house or to start a business, the modules are informative and enjoyable enough that, if they remain online, they will be a valuable resource when a student is ready to accomplish one of these tasks. The section for Young Adults might be more user-friendly to learners in our programs, but the topics are not as comprehensive as those in the Adult section.  So, this might be a good section for young adults in our programs, but those adults beyond their twenties might not want to use this section.

An additional plus to the courses is that they are available, at the click of a button, in Spanish as well as English. The interactive aspect of the courses tests students’ understanding and promotes communication making them useful in ABE/GED Reading classes and NRS Level 5 or 6 ESL classes.

However, there are some problems with this resource.

First, the resources for student use have been written at a high reading level.  Sentences are long and complex.  There are few graphics with which to break up the text.  The pretests and posttests are text-dense  (and without examples), so they are probably not useful in many adult basic education classrooms.

The Glossary and Library Materials are also written at a high reading level. The sections using mathematics are equally elevated.

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