ABC and 123: More Than Just Math: Financial Literacy (with a Flip Camera Giveaway)

Friday, July 8, 2011

More Than Just Math: Financial Literacy (with a Flip Camera Giveaway)

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Updated 7/23: Thank you to each of you who contributed to our conversation here.  What a lot of interesting thoughts on money.  Congratulations to Shelley - comment #36, chosen by Random.org - the winner of the Flip camera giveaway.


Today we are talking about money. money. money. We hope you enjoy some clever suggestions from our readers, a lively discussion about financial literacy, and a neat great giveaway opportunity!
Rachelle offers a free Coin Counting game with spinner in her math feature: It All Adds Up.

Coin Dominos, like these from Green Olives and Ham, are an interesting way to learn to identify coins and their values.
Superheroes and Princesses played the game Trading Coins inspired by The Penny Pot.
Chronicles of an Infant Bibliophile  uses board games to teach concepts of money such as counting bills and making bids.

My Paper Pony used state quarters to inspire an interest in US geography and to create some fun etchings. The pdf for this activity is available for free in her post.

Quirky Momma has a suggestion for shining up your coins before counting them.

The Adventures of Bear shared a play based way of learning about and using money.
They also did activities using several different  books about money.

As a classroom teacher it may be enough to teach kids to identify coins and count money.  However, as parents we must go a step further and intentionally teach them concepts of managing their money as well as how to make wise desicions with their financial resources. 

In collaboration with Disney, T. Rowe Price has created The Great Piggy Bank Adventure®  as a valuable teaching resource for parents to use when talking to their children about saving and spending wisely.  The Great Piggy Bank Adventure will offer lessons on four key financial themes: setting goals, saving and spending smartly, staying ahead of inflation, and diversifying your investments. They believe these lessons are more important than ever and desire to guide parents as they talk to their kids about good financial habits.

As parents and educators we would love to join the discussion on best practices for teaching financial literacy.  In the comment section of this post we are hoping to facilitate a valuable conversation about our families, our money, and how we are preparing our children to manage finances.

Here are some questions for your consideration:

~Do you think it’s appropriate to discuss your family’s financial situation with your kids?

~If so, at what age should you talk to them about family finances?

~Was the topic of money “taboo” in your family growing up?

~If so, how have you overcome that “taboo” with your kids?

~At what age do you start introducing financial concepts such as saving and spending or inflation with your kids?

~What advice would you give to other parents trying to use every day moments to teach their kids about the importance of saving and spending wisely?

These are questions every parent deals with and the answers are important because they can determine how your child learns about key financial concepts that will impact their lives.
To encourage your participaiton in this discussion we are excited to offer a Disney Piggy Bank Adventure branded Flip camera giveaway.  Each answer, reaction, or new question asked on topic that is left in the comment section between now and Tuesday July 19th will be counted as an entry into the giveaway. 

We are looking forward to hearing from you!

Disclosure: The Great Piggy Bank Adventure-branded Flip camera and a gift card for this post's author have been provided courtesy of T. Rowe Price. T. Rowe Price is not involved in or responsible for the outcome of this giveaway.  A specific comment is not required for entry into the Flip camera giveaway.  If you would prefer not to comment email us to be entered.  A winner will be selected from all entries after 10 pm est on July 19th, using random.org.

39 comments:

  1. We started doing an allowance/commission with my son when he was almost 3. He doesn't REALLY understand it, but he earns a quarter and then puts it into one of three coin purses: save, spend or give.

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  2. This summer my 9-year-old has the job of mowing part of our yard. Before he started, he agreed half the income would go in savings. Now he wants all the money and is trying to say that saving half was only for the 1st paycheck!

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  3. Part of the reason we decided to pay my son this summer was so he'd experience saving for a larger purchase. We need to rethink it a little because so far he's just made smaller, junky purchases that he has enough money for.

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  4. Growing up, we never knew any numbers for family finances but we knew when money was a little tight and when it was scary tight. We try to impart some of the same knowledge to our kids.

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  5. I believe a discussion on the family's financial situation with kids can be an imporatant conversation. I don't believe that kids need to know specific numbers but I do believe kids should be educated on how to spend responsibly within a family budget.

    Cheryl primarygraffiti(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  6. As a teacher of 1st and 2nd graders, I've had many students walk in the door with cell phones. Yes! 6 and 7 year olds with cell phones. I understand the importance of safety in the world we live in and know that some have prepaid basic phones. However, some kids have unlimited use of the phone. Here is a great example of having conversations with kids about the cost of minutes, text message, purchasing apps and how money doesn't grow on trees. Since kids at such a young age are given the responsibilitiy of a phone, why shouldn't we educated them at this young age on selective financial conversations.

    Cheryl primarygraffiti(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  7. I was ten years old when my parents began an expense account for chores and report card grades. This account was referenced on a computer program popular at the time. When I turned 13, they set me up with an ID and a checking/savings account and transferred the money from my home expense account. We sat down each month and balanced checking accounts and discussed interest. My parents believed savings were important and showed me that if I saved 100 dollars each month for 25 years, I would save x amount of money with interest. To motivate me to save, they would match every 50 dollars I put in my account. When I was 16, my father gave me a credit card. Concerned about driving and not having cash on me, he wanted to keep me safe. This too became another learning experience, matching receipts and understanding how interest would accumulate fast if the card wasn't paid in full. These valuable lessons have helped me through a successful management of money in adulthood. I look back now and I'm grateful for the education they provided!

    Cheryl primarygraffiti(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  8. When I was in first grade I wanted a school jacket. (It was the dark ages--I think it cost $10) My dad made a chart that hung in our kitchen with 10 columns of 10. Each one represented a dime. I would do chores toward the jacket. Some jobs were worth 1 or 2 and some 4 or 5. I was sooo disappointed when the money was due and my chart was not filled! My parents said keep working. (Little did I know it was already ordered!) By time the jacket arrived my chart was filled, and I felt such a sense of accomplishment.

    35 years later I think I had some wise parents!

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  9. I think it is appropriate to discuss financial matters with your children. It can start as simply as "We can't afford that right now.", wich can progress into a life long lesson on savings.

    Then as the get older being open with finances and paying bills.

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  10. A book we are using to help teach the concept of finances is, "Money Doesn't Grow On Trees."

    Our boy is five years old and we began with the concepts when he was four. They use a jar system.

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  11. I didn't really think it was tabboo to talk about finances with our family, but it wasn't something that was used for teaching either.

    I think family finances are just a good extension of math. (No tabboo necessary.:)

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  12. Love the wisdom on Mrs. Saoud's post!

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  13. This is showing my age, but I learned in elementary school, the value of saving. My allowance was a quarter each week! (See I told you it would show my age!) Any way, at that time, I could buy a stamp for a savings bond at school. Each week, I would buy 1 stamp to put in my book for ten cents. When the book was filled, you redeemed it for a savings bond. I think that it is important to show elementary children the value of saving even a small amount of money. Many banks help with savings plans!

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  14. We give our 3 year old change for doing little chores around the house. The changes goes into a piggy bank. When the piggy bank is full, we take it to the bank together. She knows that we are putting money in her college saving account. She gets very excited to be able to go to bank and get her "ticket" (account balance)!

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  15. We give our 3 year old change for doing little chores around the house. The changes goes into a piggy bank. When the piggy bank is full, we take it to the bank together. She knows that we are putting money in her college saving account. She gets very excited to be able to go to bank and get her "ticket" (account balance)!

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  16. When I was growing-up my parents never talked about money with us BUT saving money and spending wisely was stressed. I think it's important for our children to know about our finances (not necessarily numbers) but that we are a single income family and understand spending money wisely.

    Carol
    maplecreekracing(at)comcast(dot)net

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  17. My girls are 5 and just this year we have started talking to them about how OUR money is spent. Again not necessarily numbers but where the bulk of the money goes.. like house payment, car payment, foods and of course the toys they get and clothes they get. They seem to understand the with prices of things going up that we can't have everything they or we want.

    Carol
    maplecreekracing(at)comcast(dot)net

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  18. Was the topic of money “taboo” in our family.. I don't think it was.. just never came up. My parents both worked and I can't really, thankfully, remember any time when we were short on money or wanted for much. It's definitely not a taboo in my family.

    Carol
    maplecreekracing(at)comcast(dot)net

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  19. This summer we are starting to give money for EXTRA chores. They will have 3 coin purses.. well 6 twins.. save, spend and give. Sunday School right now is teaching money concepts and they get to spend money every class and they have their offering.

    I can't wait to read more ideas on teaching this habit, thanks for this give-away and the questions!

    Carol
    maplecreekracing(at)comcast(dot)net

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  20. Advice.. hmmm.. when the girls were 4 1/2 and maybe even younger I would go shopping and they would give the money to the cashier for me and get the change.. as they got a little older they started making their own purchases. Like I would give them a $5 bill and they would purchase something under $5 and complete the purchase themselves. The $5 was their allowance if they did all their chores that week. Now to work on splitting that money up into 3 categories and sticking with it.

    Carol
    maplecreekracing(at)comcast(dot)net

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  21. I'd like to know what books, children's books, does everyone read to their kids or have their kids read that teaches good finance habits?? or games?

    Carol
    maplecreekracing(at)comcast(dot)net

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  22. Money was definitely not discussed in our family. I had no idea about car payments or house payments and think that definitely put me at a disadvantage when I started. However, savings and money responsibility were stressed very much. I had a checking account before I was 10 and a credit card at 15. I couldn't spend money by splurging - I had to have a purchase goal and save for it by doing extra chores. I paid cash for my first car (which I am still driving) and became a homeowner at 21. So . . . I guess it all worked out, but it will be interesting to see how we handle things with our own kids. :)
    jrlemkemann@att.net

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  23. money was never discussed in my family beyond not being able to have a buck for the ice cream man. Even when I was older and my dad was not working and we were really bad off, my parents tried to hide it from me. I am all for being honest, tell kids why, in everything, at there level. I know I would have appreciated knowing how to manage money at a younger age!

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  24. When shopping, etc. with your child, do a think aloud. "This is very nice and not a bad price. I have enough cash to buy it, but it wouldn't be very responsible when our family is saving for our vacation. I think the vacation together would make me happier than this shirt." Of course, you need to be thinking responsibily for this to be effective...and have a firm, well thought out grasp of the values you want to teach your children.

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  25. I think it's appropriate to talk about family finances in general terms of saving, spending wisely, and giving. I would not give them specific numbers. This is what we do and our children seem to grasp that while we're saving for a family vacation there is less of a chance to get a toy at the store so they don't really ask.

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  26. I'm so glad this topic was raised. As a pediatrician, I see children all the way through the teen years. It worries me when I see so many teens without much awareness of the concepts of saving and money management. But even beyond that, teaching children about finances leads to great opportunities to nurture thriftiness, gratitude, and generosity.
    I never felt that it was taboo to discuss family finances with children. However, I think we also have to be careful to not place our financial worries or anxiety on our children. That is not helpful or instructive for them. Rather, the discussion should be objective and allow them to see why it's important to save, to discern needs from "wants", and to still give in the midst of it all.

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  27. It is so important for children to know the vaue of money. To help my preteen and teenager, I would give them their allowance twice a month. They would have to figure out how to make it last for the two week period instead of blowing it all at once.

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  28. Olá, sou do Brasil e passeando pela net encontrei o seu blog e adorei, parabéns por ele. Já o coloquei na minha lista de blogs pois pretendo voltar mais vezes por aqui. Tenha uma ótima semana.


    Marta
    http://eucraftemuitomais.blogspot.com

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  29. Being honest with your kids is REALLY important. We went through some hard times and made some major cuts -- it's been the best thing for my three teenaged daughters to see us work through that WITH them. They are SO much more savvy and conscientious about money now that I wish I had done it long before the hardship hit.

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  30. My daughter is three and though she has a piggy bank she doesn't yet realize the concept of money. We have talked about budget and managing money with her. She gets that it is important, why she can't buy something she wants, and that sometimes we don't have enough money for something. This summer we are doing some charity/volunteer work and have done some further conversation with her.

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  31. We try and teach the kids how we budget, save for things, look for sales etc. They also know that despite what they think @ times we do live an affluent lifestyle compated with the rest of the world.
    mborgman70@yahoo.com

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  32. I think eventually I would like to give my daughter an allowance, I am torn between tying it to work/chores and not. She is pretty sensible for a 3 year old. I am sure my frugal habits will wear off on her.

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  33. I was raised in a large blue collar family that had to rob peter to pay paul so we saw a lot of money mistakes growing up. In turn, as an adult I made a lot of those same mistakes. After having no choice but to file bankruptcy in 2000 we completely changed our ways. We use only cash. No credit cards or banks at all except the prepaid debit card I got. I never look at offers, which we get constantly, they go straight in the trash. So what we are teaching Blaze is if you can't afford it, you don't need it. I understand there are some things you may have payments on like cars and homes but we will be teaching him to be responsible with those as well. We live super close to paycheck to paycheck to pay our bills right now but our mortgage will be paid off in 4 years and our truck is paid for and I almost have enough to buy me a nice used car saved up.

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  34. I have a four year old and one of his favorite games is from lakeshore money sorting. He found it in my kindergarten classroom and insisted on it coming home! I never thought of having him save money and experience hat on his own. It is something I am definitely going to start! I think I am even going to put it into my money unit at school... Talk about the different uses for money and make those envelopes for them to start a system at home. Thanks for the great ideas! I am your newest follower!

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  35. Growing up, my brothers and I did not receive allowances but whenever we needed something (need and not want) we generally got it. We got very few of our wants. When my kids started wanting things, they worked for them. I remember my son wanted a Tonka road grader since our road was being worked on and he was very interested in all the big machinery. My husband and I agreed that we would pay half if he could come up with the other half of the amount needed. I must say he was very creative and ended up getting most of his money by asking his grandparents. LOL! But he got the job done. I think he was only 3 years old at the time.

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  36. We never really talked to our kids (ages 18, 11, & 6) about our finances, until recently. My youngest has Autism, and therapy has continued to drain our bank account. We are no longer able to have the 'big' holidays that they are used to. We have explained things to them in a manner that matches their age. It has worked out great, both girls are very understanding, and both have been willing to help any way they can :)

    mdlangmead at gmail dot com

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  37. nice ideas! We are going to start working on money as our lesson this week in my Preschool class.

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  38. My daughter pays her children for good report cards. One dollar for every 'A' received. I have mixed feelings with this because I feel some things should be expected and not bought out. But it's working well for them...and my grandkids are making a killing with their grades. :)

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  39. For my daycare kiddos...I laminate paper play money for the pretend cash register and purses/wallets. I use clear contact paper instead of laminating film since contact paper bends better, yet prevents the paper from tearing as badly. Sadly I can't put the coins in the register because of the younger kids. We do a money theme in February the week between Lincoln and Washington's birthdays.

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