What is financial literacy?
Financial literacy can be understood as the skillset or knowledge to manage monetary resources efficiently in order to accommodate one’s needs today and in the future. Some of the basic fundamentals that make up a financially literate individual include: the ability to budget, how to go about saving, the impact of credit and debt, investing towards one’s future, and the utilization of insurance in order to mitigate future road bumps that may detour an individual’s finances.
Why is Financial Literacy important for my Elementary Schooler?
As these concepts can be complex and traditionally focused towards adults, how might financial literacy be important to an 8 to 12-year-old? By starting conversations about various components of financial literacy early, children can be influenced to exhibit positive financial behaviors earlier in life and therefore be more prepared for what lies ahead in their future. In fact, research has shown that by age 12, children are able to use skills to resist impulsive spending strategies and understand critical concepts such as interest.
Financial Literacy Concepts for Elementary School-Aged Kids
During this stage in a child’s life, they are understanding that money is what provides a roof over their head, food on the table, and most importantly to them—their toys.
Teaching Financial Literacy to Kids in Elementary School
When it comes to establishing oneself financially, is it ever too early to start?
Junior Achievement doesn’t believe so. In order to help your elementary school student to be prepared for his or her future steps in their life, we have put together some helpful learning resources for your kids to learn at home and at school!
Based on state curriculum standards, Junior Achievement has combined required concepts with proven educational hands-on learning that enables kids to achieve a deeper understanding. Here are our recommendations for parents and teachers to spark learning in elementary aged kids.
Money Tools for….
Parents and Kids at Home
- Have a child that learns better through technology? Be sure to incorporate some online interactive games that involve math. Check out PBS Kids for fun interactive learning that your child will actually WANT to play!
- Turn their iPad time into learning time with Risk and Insurance which was created to educate elementary students in an interactive setting!
- Family night? Learning can be a joint effort! Break out your family Monopoly board to help your child get hands-on with saving, spending and investing concepts or Game of Life to let them test drive a career and make their own financial decisions!
- Need to deposit a check? Bring your child with you! It’s a great real-life experience that will help them to understand the process of banking.
Teachers and Students in the Classroom
- Want to encourage your third-graders economic concepts that will change how they see their own city? Check out Junior Achievement’s volunteer lead program -- JA Our City!
- Take learning from the classroom into a simulated town with JA BizTown! Students will be introduced to services provided by financial institutions and discover the connection between spending and having money in a bank prior to running their own (biz)town!