MANCHESTER, N.H. (4/24/09)--Students learning about personal finances applied their in-class studies to a real world setting at the CU 4 Reality Financial Literacy Fair held at America’s Credit Union Museum in Manchester, N.H. This is the fifth year students from Rundlett Middle School in Concord, N.H., participated in the CU 4 Reality Program, but the first year students learned the effects of a job loss on their spending plans (BusinessWire April 22). The CU 4 Reality Financial Literacy Program is a financial literacy curriculum that is taught to Rundlett students in partnership with New Hampshire FCU, Concord, N.H., and America’s Credit Union Museum. After completing in-school studies, more than 375 eighth-graders met on April 16-17, and 17 eight-graders gathered at the museum to test their classroom lessons. The CU 4 Reality curriculum creates an interactive learning environment in which students can practice specific financial management skills and learn early on the consequences of getting in over their head when it comes to financial matters, said Polly Saltmarsh, New Hampshire FCU marketing manager. At the fair, students receive a folder that details their personal career information, including starting annual salary. Then, students progress through the fair interacting with salespeople, volunteers, and vendors as they acquire bills for housing, transportation, food, clothing, insurance, entertainment and more. Students also must spin the “Wheel of Reality,” which could provide a financial windfall, such as additional income from refereeing or babysitting, or it could prove a financial disaster. In keeping with the economic hard times this year, students could spin the wheel and lose their jobs. Students had to face the consequences and meet with credit counselors to collect unemployment, and figure out how to make ends meet.