Three ways adults are ready to teach money management to youth

Adults are more equipped to teach financial education than they may think.

Adults and parents may express feeling of inadequacy when it comes to teaching youth money management skills; it can be challenging to teach a subject you do not feel proficient in personally. This feeling, while understandable, should not be a reason not to engage in this crucial educational topic. Here are three ways adults are more equipped to teach money management than they may think:

  1. Learning money management principles can easily occur in conjunction with youth. This topic works well for joint learning; it is not something that needs to be always taught to youth, but can be learned with youth. This makes the learning process a great fit for family education, small groups and mentoring relationships.
  2. Youth benefit from hearing real-world stories that adults have learned or experienced. While the best approach is not to say, “Learn from my mistakes,” sharing relatable stories, especially from mistakes that were made during an adult’s younger years, can make an impact on a young person. The stories can make a complex topic more understandable. Financial decisions are not cut-and-dry and sometimes “mistakes” are made. These stories are the most beneficial when they include what happened, what was learned and how changes were made.
  3. There are many resources available to support adults. Adults might benefit from utilizing the MIMoneyHealth website, which provides resources as well as online and face-to-face class information in important financial education areas. For work with youth, Michigan State University Extension 4-H Youth Development has many resources to help youth navigate financial decisions as well as equip adults to educate youth on these topics. The National Endowment for Financial Education also has a website, curriculum and resourceful articles for use with youth including the High School Financial Planning Program.

With collaborative learning, shared stories and available resources, adults are prepared to teach the next generation the important principles of money management.

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