Do you want to teach financial education to youth?

Personal education and some re-framing will set you up for success in teaching youth about money management.

Perhaps you are a community volunteer or teacher and you have recognized the need to incorporate financial education into the work you do with youth. The catch is, you may feel unqualified and ill-prepared to do so. There are a plethora of money management resources to use in working with youth, but you are concerned about your personal skill set.

Michigan State University Extension 4-H Youth Development has some ideas to build up your confidence in this area:

  • MI Money Health. MSU Extension offers face-to-face courses as well as online resources connected to money decisions, spending plans, credit and debt, saving and investing, home ownership, foreclosure and health insurance. There are also online courses you can attend for a fee.
  • Smart About Money. This website through the National Endowment for Financial Education provides free online courses that cover a variety of topics related to money such as emergency funds, financial wellness, housing and transportation plans. The Money Basics course covers the topics of spending and saving, credit and debt, insurance, investing and employment. There are additional resources on other topics to help build up your confidence.
  • Most of the youth-focused curriculum and youth money management resources include background information and key points to help with your success in facilitating without having a financial education background.
  • Youth can learn with you. You do not have to be an expert, and you can share how you don’t know all the ideas and concepts and that you are excited to learn this information now. You can acknowledge you wish you had learned it when you were their age and perhaps the ways money management education would have benefited your life.
  • Recognize that no one is perfect. The money mistakes you made or feel you continue to make do not make you the wrong person to help youth learn more about and explore financial topics.

As with most new projects, the hardest part is getting started. You do have the skills and capacity, and that MSU Extension is here to support you along the way.

Michigan State University Extension and Michigan 4-H Youth Development help to prepare young people for successful futures. As a result of career exploration and workforce preparation activities, thousands of Michigan youth are better equipped to make important decisions about their professional future, ready to contribute to the workforce and able to take fiscal responsibility in their personal lives. To learn about the positive impact of Michigan 4-H youth career preparation, money management and entrepreneurship programs, read the 2015 Impact Report: “Preparing Michigan Youth for Future Careers and Employment.”

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