Is your teenager fi­nan­cially lit­er­ate?

The Compass - - EDITORIAL OPINION -

This Novem­ber marks the first Fi­nan­cial Lit­er­acy Month in Canada. In the cur­rent eco­nomic cli­mate, it is im­por­tant that we all im­prove our knowl­edge, skills and con­fi­dence in mak­ing re­spon­si­ble fi­nan­cial choices for our­selves, but we also need to think about the next gen­er­a­tion.

Too many young Cana­di­ans leave high school lack­ing fi­nan­cial life skills, un­aware of the harsh fi­nan­cial re­al­i­ties they will face in the “real” world. That is why it is im­per­a­tive that par­ents and ed­u­ca­tors teach chil­dren how to make wise fi­nan­cial de­ci­sions.

As a high school teacher, I have used “The City: A Fi­nan­cial Life Skills Re­source” to teach my stu­dents ba­sic con­cepts such as bud­get­ing and sav­ings, credit and debt, in­sur­ance, fi­nan­cial plan­ning, and how to avoid fraud. The re­source is avail­able in French and English, both in print and on-line.

The on-line ver­sion has par­tic­u­lar youth ap­peal as it is vis­ually at­trac­tive, in­ter­ac­tive and game-like, pro­vid­ing fre­quent feed­back to the learner.

Dur­ing Fi­nan­cial Lit­er­acy Month, all par­ents and teach­ers are en­cour­aged to ini­ti­ate dis­cus­sions with teenagers re­gard­ing per­sonal money man­age­ment. To com­ple­ment these dis­cus­sions, “The City” is a good start­ing point for fi­nan­cial learn­ing. “The City” is free, ac­ces­si­ble to the gen­eral pub­lic and is suit­able for schools, com­mu­nity groups and in­di­vid­u­als. For more in­for­ma­tion about Fi­nan­cial Lit­er­acy Month, visit fi­nan­cial­lit­er­a­cy­month.ca.

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