To coin a new phrase from Ben Franklin's adage, a penny saved is a penny earned for a college education. That's the lesson some Orem Elementary School students learned during a recent PTA fund-raiser.

The students were selling calendars to raise funds for the Orem Elementary PTA, which has used some of its budget to buy gifts for the school, including cameras and computers, in past years. But rather than give the students toys or candy for prizes this time, PTA leaders were able to give winning students $25 savings accounts, which are supposed to be used to start a college education account.With financial assistance and direction from Orem Community Bank officials, the PTA awarded 16 savings accounts to students who participated in the fund-raiser.

"This is one of the more-practical lessons and rewards the students have gotten," said Cindy Russo, Orem Elementary PTA president. "Unfortunately, students don't usually get to learn much about saving and earning until they're further along in the school setting."

Russo said the rewards will help teach the students important skills, such as handling money and using a checking account, and will give parents the chance to work with their students' practical education.

"Opening a savings account gives parents an opportunity to help their kids understand the importance of saving," she said. "Kids need to learn that if Mom has a check in her pocket, it doesn't necessarily mean she's got money."