ACCC Provides Resources for Teaching Kids About Money

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American Consumer Credit Counseling provides tips and resources to kids so they can develop sound financial habits

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Financial literacy is a critical subject that often doesn’t get the attention it deserves. It is so important that children start learning about finances at a young age so they are better prepared to make sound financial decisions in the future.

As part of National Financial Literacy Month, national nonprofit American Consumer Credit Counseling is aiming to help kids learn about finances at an early age. Developing good financial habits and responsibility at an early age will benefit kids well into adulthood. American Consumer Credit Counseling provides financial based activities, budgeting, spending and saving tips geared to children and young adults to better prepare them for a solid financial future.

“Our nation’s economic future depends on the financial well-being of our youth,” said Steve Trumble, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling, which is based in Newton, MA. “Financial literacy is a critical subject that often doesn’t get the attention it deserves. It is so important that children start learning about finances at a young age so they are better prepared to make sound financial decisions in the future.”

According to a study by T. Rowe Price, more than half (53 percent) of adults only discuss financial topics with their kids as instances occur. When it comes to discussing financial matters with their kids, 69 percent of adults say they have some reluctance. When discussing finances, 54 percent of adults frequently discuss the importance of saving with their kids.

American Consumer Credit Counseling provides kids and young adults with activities and financial tips: Information for Kids (http://www.consumercredit.com/financial-education/youth-money/information-for-kids-learning-about-money/):

1. Understanding the value of money: Young children grades K-2 know that money must be exchanged for things they want or need, but often they do not fully understand the value money holds. Flashcards showing coins and bills with their corresponding value are a great way to help children identify the value of money. As children learn basic arithmetic such as addition and subtraction, they will become more comfortable working on activities that involve money. Creating a chore chart is another method to teach younger children that you have to work to earn money. The chart is a helpful tool to measure how their hard work pays off into money they can spend.

2. Balancing wants and needs: Children grades 3-6 now have a greater understanding of money and are probably accumulating some of their own through birthdays and weekly allowances. This is the time when they can start making choices to spend, save and budget. Everyone has a limited amount of money that they can use to buy things they need or want. With this comes the task of weighing the cost and benefits of spending money. If children learn how to effectively budget, they will have the ability to understand what they can buy now and what they must save for future purchases. Saving money will always be beneficial as it will accumulate over time and kids learn they can afford something special the more they save.

3. Developing monetary goals: For kids between grades 7-12, life gets busier and the need for money becomes greater for things like going out with friends, school lunches, class trips, prom, clothes, cars and college. If teens get an allowance from their parents or have a part-time job, they are making money that they can spend or save. While it isn’t a bad thing to spend money, the key is to make children aware of spending habits and how to save or budget when they want something that is out of their price range. These habits will enable children to make better choices in the future when it comes to spending their money.

4. Smart spending and saving for the future: As young adults embark on their journey after high school and through college, they will face many decisions that require a degree of financial responsibility. Young adults will soon learn that they need to spend money on textbooks, food, and rent if they live off campus and more. Doing research and finding scholarships that students can apply for pays off in the long run. Getting a part time job either on or off campus is a great way to earn spending money for things like social activities, food, clothes and other expenses. Many college campuses have career offices that are very helpful in finding employment. The more cognizant students are of their spending and saving habits in college, the less debt they’ll have to pay when they graduate.

About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management through credit counseling, debt management, bankruptcy counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling and financial education concerning debt solutions. In order to help consumers reach their goal of debt relief, ACCC provides a range of free consumer personal finance resources on a variety of topics including budgeting, credit and debt management, student loan assistance, youth and money, homeownership, identity theft, senior living and retirement. Consumers can use ACCC’s worksheets, videos, calculators, and blog articles to make the best possible decisions regarding their financial future. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®). For more information or to access free financial education resources, log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit http://www.consumercredit.com/financial-education.aspx

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