Growing up I still remember my home economics class I took in the 6th grade. Our main purpose of the class was to understand money, balancing a check book, planning for college, planning for living expenses and lastly finding a career that would fund all my dreams and aspirations.
I quickly learned that money and credit were extremely important as I planned my big escape out my parents’ care. Part of the class included research the type of furniture we liked, and type of apartment/housing we were aiming to have. I remember surfing through the furniture advertisements and cutting out pictures (and the prices) of my dream living room, bedroom, dining room and reality hit me. WOW I HAVE EXPENSIVE TASTE. After calculating it all up I said to myself “I need a job with a nice salary to support myself". That was the push I needed to help plan my career and college education.
It’s sad to say most schools today no longer offer Home Economics classes and as parents/mentors/siblings it is our job to educate our youth. Here are some pointers when attempting to teach the importance of finances to your youth:
Teach the importance of long-term stability: Understanding concepts like budgeting, debt management, and investing equips them with the tools to build a strong long-term financial foundation and achieve their financial goals.
Avoid unnecessary debt & teach them how to be a responsible consumer: By teaching them about responsible borrowing and the consequences of debt, we can help them make wise financial choices and avoid financial pitfalls. Financial education helps youth become responsible consumers. They learn to differentiate between needs and wants, make informed purchasing decisions, and avoid falling into excessive consumerism or impulsive buying habits.
Empower an Entrepreneurial Mindset: Financial education encourages entrepreneurial thinking and economic empowerment. By understanding money and business concepts, youth are better equipped to start their own ventures, create jobs, and contribute to economic growth.
Help them feel Confident & Independent about money: Financial education fosters confidence and independence in youth. When they understand money matters, they feel more empowered to manage their finances, negotiate financial transactions, and advocate for their financial rights.
Break the “financial” generational curse: By teaching youth about money, we can break the cycle of financial illiteracy that may have been passed down through generations. Empowering young individuals with financial knowledge enables them to make better choices for themselves and their families.