When it comes to economic education, there are many
resources on the World Wide Web for educators, students,
and parents. A good source of information on U.S.
currency and other money-related issues is the U.S.
Department of the Treasury (http://www.ustreas.gov).
The Treasury Kid's Page (http://www.ustreas.gov/kids) may be a useful tool for students to learn about management of our country's money resources if it is incorporated into a curriculum on economic education or history education. Students can use the Treasury Page to research assignments or projects, to find answers to trivia questions, to compete in an Internet scavenger hunt, or just to enjoy the money match game. The Treasury web site entertains as it informs visitors about the department itself and about U.S. currency and coins.
The Kid's Page has a fuzzy tour guide in Trez, the unofficial cat of the U.S. Treasury who helps visitors navigate the page. Although the Kid's Page has some of the same links as the main web site, it has a few special features:
The history section has an online brochure on the Treasury, with general information about the origin, organization, and functions of the Department. Also available are background information on the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Mint, and everyone's favorite topic, taxes and why we pay them.
Treasury's virtual tour:
Take a tour of the majestic Treasury Building, the same building on the back of the $10 bill, right from the comfort of your own computer. You can view restored rooms filled with history such as the Secretary Salmon Chase Suite, the Andrew Johnson Suite, and the Cash Room. The Treasury historical archives has photos and information on the construction of the Treasury building, Treasury and Justice Department paintings, and other interesting historical artifacts.
Under the Treasury umbrella:
The web page carries information on the bureaus and offices that fall under the Treasury Department's control - the Internal Revenue Service, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, the U.S. Mint, the Bureau of Public Debt, and the Financial Management Services, to name a few.
Did you know that a number of the law enforcement bureaus are also part of the Treasury Department? The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, the U.S. Customs Service, and the U.S. Secret Service are all part of the Treasury Department.
The Treasury provides links to all its bureaus from the Treasury's main web site: http://www.ustreas.gov/treasury/bureaus/.
This section, entitled "Know Your Money," contains information from the Secret Service, the same federal agency in charge of protecting the President. You can play the role of an aspiring Secret Service Agent by learning about the types of counterfeit currency to look for, the characteristics of genuine currency, and how to guard against counterfeiting.
Working like a dog:
A refreshing little item included on the Kid's Page is the link to the U.S. Customs Service "Dog of the Month." The web site showcases these canine cops who receive recognition for their hard work in discovering and seizing illegal drugs. The Dog of the Month is displayed in baseball card format with a portrait of the dog on one side of the card and on the other side, a listing of the dog's vital statistics, his stats for drug busts, seizures leading to arrests, and the value of the drugs seized. Doc, a mixed Brittany Spaniel, has seized narcotics worth more than $18 million in his career. Give that dog a raise!
Come on down!
The Treasury has an interactive game for the kids. It is a drag and drop arrangement challenging students to match historical figures to the corresponding currency denomination.
Yes, I have a Chia Pet:
Looking for an unusual gift for someone who has everything or is just plain difficult to buy for? The Treasury showcases some unique gift ideas that include commemorative coins, money clips, tie tacks, cuff links, watches, ornaments, earrings and the like. It's especially great for coin collectors.
Wait, There's More:
The Treasury Page has everything you've ever wanted to know about savings bonds (but were afraid to ask). There is an extensive collection of information found in "The Reading Room" (with topics arranged from A-Z) and "Frequently Asked Questions." My favorites are "Will there be a new dollar coin?" and "Will pennies be discontinued?".