Aspiration: Budgeting (Class 7)

Straight-A Guide Job Training Program

Lesson #7: Aspiration: Budgeting

Importance of developing financial literacy

Materials Required:

  • Classroom space
  • Sufficient number of chairs with writing surface
  • Budget handout

Introduce Lesson #7 (5 minutes):

  • Provide overview of why financial literacy leads to success.

First steps (10 minutes):

  • Take roll of participants.
  • Facilitator discusses his personal financial history. He describes how he made past financial decisions and where those decisions led. Then he talks about what he learned about making prudent financial decisions.

Goals and Objectives (5 minutes):

  • Explain reason why each participant should leave class with a full understanding of budgets.

Expected Learning Outcomes (5 minutes):

  • Facilitator will show participants how to create a budget to guide them through various stages of their life. Successful participants will succeed in making a case to live beneath their means.

Preliminary introduction (5 minutes):

  • Facilitator asks class to participate in defining routine monthly expenditures. He will write those expenditures on board for all to see.

Direct Instruction (10 minutes):

  • Facilitator evaluates basic, recurring monthly expenditures.
  • He explains how he prioritizes spending.
  • He creates plan that will advance his financial position in weeks, months, and years ahead.
  • Shows that effective budgeting requires tracking of both spending as well as positioning oneself for higher earnings.

Guided Practice (20 minutes):

  • Facilitator issues budget handout for each participant.
  • Facilitator asks group to complete budget they need to live stable life.
  • Facilitator asks group to use budget as a guide to show steps they must take to prepare for success.

Lesson #7: Handout on budgeting

People who succeed understand how to make sacrifices today in order to position themselves for strength tomorrow. They become master strategists. In our Straight-A Guide program, we frequently say that an overnight success is 20 years in the making. Rather than living with fantasies, people who adhere to the Straight-A Guide set deliberate courses of action to achieve success.  Consider basic recurring expenses such as the following:

Housing / Entertainment / Utilities / Food  / Clothing / Transportation / Insurance / Savings / Debt service / Other recurring expenses


Proceed through following exercise:

1. Rank those expense categories in order of importance.



2. Determine what percentage of your income you should allocate to each item.



3. On a scale of 1 to 10, determine how well you’re doing at living within your stated allocations.



4. Determine what dollar amount you would need to spend on each category to define success in your life.



5. Determine how much income you would need to earn in order to live within your budget and maintain proper allocations of spending in each category.



6. What steps can you take today to position yourself for higher income in months and years ahead?



7. What expenditures can you cut out today to enhance your prospects for success tomorrow?