February 21, 2012
What is a budget?
Please reference the attached links and budget items posted to Mr. Ventriglia’s
website to define the vocabulary below. There are a few power points and
handouts that will assist you in this task.
Academic vocabulary – Assets, liabilities, net worth, needs, wants, balance sheet,
cash, debit card, check, credit card, compound interest, FDIC, savings account,
money market account, certificate of deposit, bonds, rule of 72, savings bonds,
treasury bonds, stockholder, dividend, stock appreciation, mutual funds, inflation,
401K, principal, interest, upside down, identity theft, auto, home, rental, medical
insurance, disability insurance, net/gross income, savings
We would like you to have a conversation with your parents about finance and
budget; the information you gather will not be utilized by anyone other than
you (their child) and the teacher who is reviewing their findings. If you are not
comfortable with giving your actual information, then you can give your child
figures that would be reasonable for them to complete the assignment.
Questions to ask your parents
What is your parents net monthly income?
What are your parents fixed monthly expenses?
Fixed Expense Monthly Amount Percent
Mortgage (with/without taxes)
Phone Bill (land line)
Cellular Phone Bill
Gas, Oil, Propane (heat)
Auto Loan (s)
Student Loan(s)/College Tuition
What is the total fixed monthly expense? $ .
What are your parents flexible expenses?
Flexible Monthly Total Percent
books, theatre, games, haircut,
recreation, nails, coffee, birthday,
weddings, parties etc.)
Expenses related to extra-curricular
activities for children/adults
(lessons, athletics, gym
What is the total flexible monthly expense? $ .
These are just a sampling of what may or may not be in your parents’ monthly
budget. The point is running a household efficiently, effectively, and within the
constraints of a family budget is extremely difficult. So, when you ask your
parents for that discretionary want– think twice about how it will affect the
family’s monthly budget. What is the opportunity cost for your family?
You must then calculate what percent of your budget is fixed, flexible and then
calculate each individual expense (part/whole); you may use an excel spreadsheet
if that is easier and make a pie chart if you so desire.
You may create a legend by color (Fixed vs. Flexible), you may use percents, and
divide things accordingly.
Weekly Food Exercise
Using the flyer you obtained from the Sunday newspaper, you must map out
how you are going to feed your family for one week. You must ask your mother
or guardian exactly how expensive is it to buy groceries for a family of 4 for one
week; you will be eating at home not out (need vs. want); you must create a
menu for seven days (breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks) for 4 adults; you
must then go through the flyer and purchase the items necessary. You must
remain within your budget. Usually it costs me approximately $200.00 to feed
my family on a weekly basis (this does not include toiletries, paper goods,
cleaning items) if that helps you.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner Snacks
Then make a complete list of items from the flyer. Remember one packet of chicken is only good for
one meal; one pound of grapes will last only 2 days; you have to keep in mind that a portion is not small.
You must be realistic when you shop. So find yourself a husband or wife and get to Price Chopper,
Shoprite, A & P, Stop & Shop etc.
Use your calculator, it will help you immensely.