October 22nd, 2009 Archive

The Youth and Financial Literacy

October 22nd, 2009 by Adaire in Financial Freedom

How old should we start teaching our kids about money?


Hi, Adaire Mercer here and I’m so excited to write my first piece here on the Make More, Live More, Give More blog.  I’ve known Liz and Ric for several years and their work has been pivotal for me.

When I suggested that I could review some of the interviews they’ve done through Small Business CEO Magazine and the New Order Business School they thought it was a fantastic idea….

So here goes, and I hope you enjoy!

As you probably already know, Liz and Ric have a son, Chandler, who’s almost 13 years old and he’s planning to start his own business already.

Liz mentioned the story in one of her previous posts, that he’s working to raise around $3500 so he could go with his class on a field trip to Paris next summer.  The thing is, he’s not the type who’s really into business (not like his parents) but he’s planning to start some kind of money making venture that would help him earn the amount he needs to finance the trip.  And did I mention that he’s just barely 13? :)

How Young is Too Young?

Let me ask you then, do you think he’s too young to learn all about business and wealth building?  Well, I don’t think so, and obviously Liz and Ric don’t think so either.  They’re actually doing a bit of business coaching with Chandler, and have gotten him the tools he needs to start his own business.  Of course they just got the basic stuff for him – things that someone his age would understand, and help him achieve his goals and objectives.  But not every kid has parents like Chandler.  And unfortunately, schools don’t really teach students about money, which is why not everyone has the financial literacy to face the challenges ahead.

Financial Education for the Youth

“Financial literacy is a life skill that we must teach our children.”  Actually, I’m just borrowing those words from Sharon Lechter.  Ric recently got her to discuss all about financial literacy in the New Order Business School T.A.L.K.

Sharon Lechter is the founder of the financial educational organization Pay Your Family First, as well as YOUTHpreneur.  She is also on the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Literacy.  And most of all, she is more popularly known as the co-author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad and the Rich Dad series of books.  She’s very well versed about financial literacy and there’s no better person to learn from about it.

Cause and Effect

Sharon is actually very passionate about teaching financial education to the youth.  Her mission is to bring financial literacy education to schools because she believes it’s the way of hope.  Her interest in this began in 1992, and the thing that prompted her to do this was when her oldest son got into credit card debt while he was in college.  It got her pretty upset because she believed she taught her son well about money.  She passed on to him what she learned from her mother.  But back then, credit cards were still pretty much non-existent so her teachings may not have been applicable to her son.

What happened to Sharon and her son was not an isolated case.  Many young people are getting into credit card debt because they don’t know much about financial literacy.  But who could blame them?  It wasn’t really taught in school and not all parents have that particular knowledge to impart on their children.

Learning about financial literacy would not only help the youth, but people of any age as well, especially those who are planning to start their own business.  Of course you have to go through a bit of a learning curve and that means making mistakes along the way.  But mistakes do happen so just deal with it.  As much as possible, learn from your mistakes and don’t repeat them.

Introducing YOUTHpreneur

If only there was a YOUTHpreneur program when I was young, I would’ve enrolled in it myself… :) …  Fortunately, our kids CAN benefit from it.  One of the products in YOUTHpreneur helps young ones get started in creating their own businesses.  They learn about business planning, marketing and more.  They’re basically being taught the fundamentals of how to make money and the basics of making a business grow.  In fact, one of the processes of the YOUTHpreneur program’s business kit is to teach the children how to set little goals and get little wins.  This would help boost their self-esteem every time they achieve their little goals.  Having self-esteem would not only make them feel more confident about dealing with their finances but would contribute to their self-improvement and personal growth as well.

I believe it would be really beneficial for children and young entrepreneurs to find out more about financial literacy, as this would better equip them to face the real world.

What’s YOUR take on this?

Leave a comment below and tell us whether you think learning about financial literacy could really help you “Make More”.

Or if you wish to learn more about financial literacy and the YOUTHpreneur program, you can get the whole recording of Sharon Lechter’s TALK from the New Order Business School – for free.

Have fun learning!  Till next time.