Severna Park third-graders follow money to the bank A CASH COURSE CENTRAL COUNTY -- Arnold * Broadneck * Severna Park * Crownsville * Millersville

April 29, 1993|By Angela Winter Ney | Angela Winter Ney,Staff Writer

The third-graders from Severna Park Elementary School who visited Maryland National Bank yesterday came clutching their wordly goods -- boxes of quarters and bills in shabby wallets.

In the final session of a six-week money class sponsored by the bank, the children came to learn what happens to their money after it leaves their hands.

But they had other goals, too.

"I want to dive into the money!" exclaimed Scott Williams.

"I have an account, but I don't know where," yelled another child.

At the drive-through window, the children marveled at the pneumatic tube. Kathleen Dennig, the bank's financial service representative who taught the money class, explained that the tube works like a vacuum.

"Oh, boy, that's like a roller-coaster," said one boy.

Caroline Smith, another third-grader, took a look at the teller's area and shook her head. "This place is messy," she said.

In the vault, the youngsters pressed excitedly to touch the pack of $1,000 bills Ms. Dennig showed them.

"Everybody loves the money, those big bills," she said.

For several months, Ms. Dennig has visited two classes of third-graders at Severna Park Elementary, explaining the intricacies of finance.

The students loved the hourlong classes, but some were dismayed to learn that credit cards weren't free, she said.

"They thought you could use one with unlimited consequence," Ms. Dennig said.

"They didn't realize you have to pay."

The children were the first public school students in Anne Arundel County to receive the "Supersavers" program. Chesapeake Academy second-graders were the first private students to have the money class.

The money basics program has reached 12,000 Washington and Maryland elementary school students. The Severna Park children learned how to fill out a deposit slip and the purpose of withdrawals.

Ms. Dennig also taught them about savings and checking accounts, currency rates, compound interest and automated teller machines. The children studied with the aid of booklets and work sheets.

Branch manager Terrie Price said the program teaches "the importance of saving money and handling bank accounts. From the comments, the students never had learned anything like this."

But for elementary student Kyle Rogge, the attraction wasn't strictly business.

"This place is cool," he said. "I like how there's really big doors."

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