April is National Financial Literacy Month! Research has shown that American teens rank below half of their peers in other developed economies when it comes to financial literacy. Mentoring can play an important role in helping young people develop and maintain healthy financial habits – habits that are essential to their future success.
Since 2003, the United States has recognized April as Financial Literacy Month, a time when financial education is spotlighted. This month is a good time to modify money habits, spending and behaviors. Good money management skills and habits should be practiced every day with budgeting, spending, investing and savings.
According to consumerfinance.gov, during different stages of their lives, youth need to be taught how to become financially savvy. Financial habits are learned behaviors that kids can acquire from caring adults in their lives. Starting early in life, parents and mentors can start teaching kids about money management using savings jars.
For youth that go off to college, money management skills become essential because student loan debt can create a financial crisis that is hard to remedy later in life. According to the councilforeconed.org, a group of high school students, in Lexington, Massachusetts called “Project Finance” pushed for more financial education in their schools. These students recognized the need of more personal finance education to be taught in high schools nationally, because they believe “their generation is being academically, and not financially prepared for life after graduation.” In March 2017, this group successfully requested for their State Board of Education to review the Council for Economic Education, National Standard for Financial Literacy to implement personal finance into the state curriculums. This push was just the beginning of a movement of financial literacy initiatives nationally being introduced by group leaders, communities and organizations individually. Money management skills must be practiced daily, must start early in life, and continue beyond graduating from high school.
Here are some ways you and your mentee can practice learning about Financial Literacy:
Ages 4 to 10: Planning for the future, setting goals, and sticking to them.
Ages 6 to 12: Help them with rules of thumb and day-to-day habits that shape how they earn, save, and shop.
Ages 13 to 21: Give them chances to make money choices, experience natural consequences, and reflect on their decisions.
Everyday money management skills can be taught in a variety of settings. See below for one example!
Use a trip to the grocery store as a way of practicing budgeting:
Check out this Financial Literacy Resource: Money as You Grow: www.consumerfinance.gov
Please check us out at www.jaredsheartofsuccess.com to register for our next quarterly Financial Literacy workshop. Jared’s Money Savvy Club Series© will be held on April 28, 2018 in Decatur, GA. We are modifying money habits in the community one child and family at a time. Practice makes perfect and bad money habits can be changed.