During the coronavirus quarantine and time of self-isolation, we may find ourselves acting as homeschool instructors for our children. The financial fragility highlighted by the unstable stock market, job layoffs and rising unemployment rates all point to one lesson you can’t afford to miss: teaching your children about finances.
April is Financial Capability Month so you may be seeing a lot of startling statistics about financial weakness but more states than ever are requiring some financial literacy as a requirement for graduation. This is great news! We know that students who have received some financial education make smarter decisions around student debt and credit. We also know that children learn a great deal about financial management by observing their parent’s financial behavior.
However, while working from home and having kids home, too, it can be difficult to search out reliable and affordable resources for teaching children these important concepts. Below is a compiled list of free programs, games, curricula and more from financial educators across the country.
Resources for Financial Literacy Education for Youth
- NEFE has a program called High School Financial Planning Program (HSFPS) that is aimed at grades 8-12. It focuses on teaching teens about attitudes and behaviors that impact finances. The site also has a specific area for parents.
- Jumpstart.org has National Standards in K-12 in Personal Finance Education which lists financial competencies by age and provides a curriculum.
- MilitaryOneSource offers 7 tips to teach your teen about finances.
- CFPB offers resources for parents teaching kids about money. The Money as You Grow Bookshelf is a list of book titles with downloadable parent guides to help parents teach financial skills from the featured children’s book.
- The University of Missouri Extension has compiled a list of Resources for Teaching Money Issues. A small number of these may require payment.
- BizKids.com offers educational videos and interactive games that teach money skills that comply with National and State Standards.
- The FDIC offers the Money Smart for Young People which offers downloadable lesson plans and guides.
- North Dakota State University Extension offers Free Personal Finance Resources for teachers – most can be adapted for use by parents instead.
- NextGen Personal Finance offers games and educational programming.
- MoneySKILL is a free online course to teach children about financial management.
- Dr. Barbara O’Neill has 24 financial lesson plans from Rutgers University Cooperative Extension.
- Developed for teachers, Smart Path from the University of Cincinnati can be easily adapted for parent’s use. Registration is required but materials are free.
- Michigan State University Extension has a current webinar series that focuses on the Basics of Credit for Youth.
- Utah 4-H has a Money Mentors program which is a 6 lesson financial education for kids curriculum. Registration is required, materials are free.
- The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture has developed a personal finance from a distance resource for teachers to use with high school students and a learning at home about money guide for parents to use with children who are out of school due to COVID-19.
- A different take on financial education, this resource from Kansas State University focuses on teaching children the value of Time, Money, and Talent, with an instructor’s guide.
- Banzai! teaches through scenario-built lessons for ages 8 and up.
Do you know of another great, free program? Leave it in the comments.
Of course, children need support beyond academics during this stressful time. Military Families Learning Network has identified resources for supporting children and families’ emotional well-being during the Coronavirus pandemic: