Interpreting bank statements
In this activity students learn that bank statements are a rich source of information and can be used as a money management tool. It teaches them the difference between credit and debit and that managing money involves keeping track of their income and spending.
This learning provides a foundation for students to understand how individuals and businesses manage their income and expenses through record keeping.
This activity contributes to the following outcomes.
- applies consumer, financial, economic, business, legal, political and employment concepts and terminology in a variety of contexts COM5-1
- evaluates options for solving problems and issues COM5-5
- develops and implements plans designed to achieve goals COM5-6
- explains information using a variety of forms COM5-8
- works independently and collaboratively to meet individual and collective goals within specified timeframes COM5-9
Related Stage 4 outcomes: COM4-1, COM4-5, COM4-6, COM4-8, COM4-9
Related Life Skills outcomes: COMLS-1, COMLS-7, COMLS-9, COMLS-12, COMLS-13
Core 1: Consumer and financial decisions
- investigate the consequences of poor financial management, including impact on wellbeing of the individual and families.
- investigate tools and strategies for effective financial management, including:
- monitoring and record-keeping to avoid overcommitment, e.g. managing mobile phone costs
- savings and superannuation plans.
Option 7: Towards independence
- explain the responsible management of finances when living independently, including: (ACHEK018) strategies to minimise financial problems, e.g. budgeting, saving, monitoring spending, superannuation.
Interpreting bank statements
Student learning resources
What does a bank statement tell you?
Suggested activity sequence
This sequence is intended as a framework to be modified and adapted by teachers to suit the needs of a class group.
- Ask students if they have a bank account and if so, whether they view their bank statements. Tally the number of students who have bank accounts and the number who view their statements.
- Use slide 2 of the visualiser to explain the following about the sample bank statement:
- opening balance
- amount of money that was deposited, which is called ‘credit’
- amount of money withdrawn, which is called a ‘debit’
- balance following each transaction.
- Use slide 3 of the visualiser to explain the person’s net financial position for the month of June, including the closing balance.
- Discuss the scenario on the visualiser and elicit responses on what it tells students about this person’s income and spending patterns. Prompts may include:
- Did this person have more or less money at the end of the month?
- What did they spend most of their money on?
- Are they living within their means, that is, spending what they earn or less?
- What advice would you give to this person to support them to save money or at least live within their means?
- Students complete the worksheet.
- As a class, discuss the importance of using bank statements as a money management tool.
- Ask students if they will now use bank statements as a tool.
- Revise the tally that was recorded on the board at the start of the lesson.