Surveys of Kids Ages 7-10 and Their Parents Demonstrate the Need for Personal Financial Education Early and Often

Colorado Springs, Colo. (April 17, 2017) A new survey by Wakefield Research for Junior Achievement and the Jackson Charitable Foundation reveals that when it comes to money, kids as old as 10 admit they still have a lot to learn.

According to the JA-Jackson Children's Financial Literacy Survey which included 500 children seven to 10 years of age and their parents, 33 percent of the young respondents haven't been taught how to get or earn money, 41 percent haven't been taught how to spend money, and 47 percent have not learned how to give money to help people. When asked why they think people put money in a bank, only 53 percent selected the answer of saving it so they won't spend it. Only 25 percent know you can earn interest on savings.

"The message to parents is simple," said Jack E. Kosakowski, president and chief executive officer of Junior Achievement USA. "It's never too early to teach your children the short and long-term rewards of saving and spending money wisely."

The results also demonstrate kids' awareness about and interest in money even at a young age. When asked how people earn money, 91 percent of kids responded that people get money from working at a job, and 55 percent of kids say they are excited when adults talk about money. Most are knowledgeable about the basics of money, including how to count and save money – likely, in part, due to 82 percent of kids earning an allowance for doing chores, getting good grades, doing homework and simply being kind to others.

 "When it comes to kids and their financial futures, perhaps the simplest way to make a positive impact is by encouraging more conversations about money," said Jackson Charitable Foundation Executive Director Danielle Robinson. "We know adults pass along advice and guidance to young people about how to earn, save, spend and donate money, and the Jackson Charitable Foundation is pleased to partner with Junior Achievement to spark more of those important conversations at home and in the classroom."

According to the survey, parents are open to discussion. The majority (77 percent) believe that money is the easiest to explain to their child, compared to other topics kids inquire about such as where babies come from, death and even politics. The same percentage (77 percent) of parents feel the best place for children to learn the basics of personal finance is at home, at the average age of eight years old and as young as five. And, 92 percent of parents are themselves saving money – for emergencies, college tuition and retirement, followed by vacations and cars and other large purchases.

The Jackson Charitable Foundation's first initiative, Cha-ChingTM Money Smart Kids, teaches smart money values to kids through a series of three-minute music videos of relatable animated characters making real-world decisions about money. JA and Jackson formed a partnership to integrate the Cha-Ching videos and lessons into the JA Our City entrepreneurship, financial literacy and work-preparedness program, which is taught in classrooms to approximately 450,000 third-grade students across the country annually.  To inspire financial learning beyond the classroom, the program includes take-home activities for kids and their parents.


"As adults, it's our responsibility to help children feel less confused and more motivated about money. Simply helping your child open and manage a bank account to save for something specific such as pocket money for an upcoming vacation or even college is a great way to help kids learn to achieve financial freedom and excite kids about money, especially when they see it accumulate," said Kosakowski.



The Junior Achievement-Jackson Financial Literacy Surveys were conducted by Wakefield Research ( among 500 U.S. children ages 7-10 and 500 parents of U.S. children ages 7-10, between March 21 and March 27, 2017, using an email invitation and an online survey. 

Results of any sample are subject to sampling variation. The magnitude of the variation is measurable and is affected by the number of interviews and the level of the percentages expressing the results.  For the interviews conducted in this particular study, the chances are 95 in 100 that a survey result does not vary, plus or minus, by more than 4.4 percentage points in each audience from the result that would be obtained if interviews had been conducted with all persons in the universe represented by the sample.

About Junior Achievement USA® (JA)

Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. Today, JA reaches more than 4.8 million students per year in 109 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.6 million students served by operations in over 100 countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit for more information.

About The Jackson Charitable Foundation

The Jackson Charitable Foundation, the charitable-giving arm of Jackson, is a 501(c)(3) private operating foundation. Its mission is to provide educational programming to increase the financial knowledge of Americans. Our vision is for all Americans to have the strong personal finance skills that allow people to live fuller, more self-directed lives. The Foundation works with Jackson associates and world-class partners to provide economic opportunities that build strong communities. Follow the Jackson Charitable Foundation at and on Twitter at @JacksonFdn.


Media Contacts:

Ed Grocholski
Junior Achievement USA®