EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (Nov. 18, 2009) – Recent surveys have highlighted the lack of personal finance education among students. In response, a sense of urgency has emerged over the need to revise state curriculum standards to include financial literacy education. To date, 20 states have revised high school graduation requirements to better prepare students for college and the workforce, directing school districts to implement a one-semester personal finance course, or incorporate personal finance into the curricula for other subjects such as economics, social studies, or mathematics.

In an effort to help educators meet these new requirements, Realityworks, Inc., developer of real-life, interactive educational products, announces the availability of TimeMAPS™ Money Management and Life Skills Program, personal finance software that meets state standards. The TimeMAPS software package will be featured at the Association of Career and Technical Education’s (ACTE) Annual Convention and Career Tech Expo to be held Nov. 19-21, 2009, at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center in Nashville, Tenn.

A national evaluation by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service revealed that as few as 10 hours of classroom instruction on financial literacy could provide enough knowledge to improve both how teens handle money and their financial behavior in general. These results, published in 2007, have prompted states to include financial literacy as part of the high school curriculum.

Twenty states have adopted personal finance education as a graduation requirement, including:
•    Arizona (Arizona State Standards)
•    Illinois (Illinois Consumer Education Proficiency Test)
•    New Jersey (New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards)
•    New York (New York Social Studies Standards)
•    Ohio (Ohio Academic Content Standards)
•    Oklahoma (Oklahoma Mathematics Content Standards)
•    Texas (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills Standards)
•    Utah (Utah Core Curriculum Standards)

Using the TimeMAPS software, educators have access to 13 themes with 54 lessons and more than 140 interactive examples of personal finance concepts. The program uses the most recent financial data provided by the federal government and is updated annually for all regions in the United States.

TimeMAPS also includes a curriculum CD and online assessment tool that minimize paperwork for educators, allowing more time for instruction.

In addition to the TimeMAPS package, a student resource CD is available to extend learning beyond the classroom. The CD contains worksheets, reviews, quizzes and projects that students can use to reinforce financial literacy lessons being taught from the curriculum.

Realityworks will host two 50-minute workshops during the ACTE conference. “TimeMAPS: Financial Literacy through Digital Technology” will be held from 11-11:50 a.m. and 12-12:50 p.m. in the exhibit area of the Gaylord Opryland.

This will be Realityworks’ sixth year supporting the goals of ACTE, having introduced products such as the RealCare® Baby to educators at previous conferences. Educators can learn more about Realityworks’ interactive, educational products by visiting booths 652 & 653 at the ACTE conference. For more information on the ACTE conference, visit www.acteonline.org. For more information on TimeMAPS, visit www.teachingpersonalfinance.com.

About Realityworks, Inc.
Realityworks, Inc., developer of life-changing, interactive educational products, was founded in 1994. Its award-winning products provide students with realistic learning experiences, and are used by educators in Career and Technical Education, Family and Consumer Science and Health courses, as well as in other instructional settings worldwide. For more information, visit www.realityworks.com, or call toll free at 1-800-830-1416.

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