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Digital Money Management for Kids: Teaching Financial Literacy in the Digital Age


Kid with Money

Kids today will likely see and use money differently than their parents. As time passes, technology becomes a more significant part of how the world spends, saves, and manages funds. You’ll want to teach your kids to use these new tools when they can understand them. Whether you're a parent or an educator, you’ll find many ways to teach youngsters about financial literacy in the digital age, and these tips and methods will provide a good starting point.


Skills To Consider In The Digital Age


Since making and spending money is such a big part of life in this world, it’s vital that parents and educators teach kids about financial literacy before they grow up and get out on their own. One way to define digital financial literacy is learning how to manage money using electronics and online platforms. You can teach the kids the principles of saving, earning, and budgeting using digital tools, apps, and video games so it all ties together nicely. 


There are several core principles of digital literacy that you’ll want to teach your kids, including how to use online banking platforms and the importance of a solid credit score. Educate teens about credit cards and how to view their balances online. Also, even if they don’t yet have a lot on their report, show them how to check their credit score to look for inaccuracies. Tell them that if they find one, they’ll want to report it to the credit bureau so their record isn’t tarnished.


If they’re old enough to understand or show an interest, you can also teach them about emerging trends, including cryptocurrencies and robo-advisors. 


Before you go too far into the use of apps, websites, and games, you must take some time to teach the dangers of using tech, like the potential for hackers and fake websites. Show them what to look for when using money online, including verifying that the “s,” which stands for secure, is at the end of the HTTP in the address bar. Also, to avoid viewing financial information on public Wi-Fi because strangers can set up fake connections. 


Teaching Kids Financial Literacy Online


Young children should generally stay off of websites and online platforms until they’re old enough to understand what they’re doing, but once they are, prepare them for what they’ll be doing in the future. 


Once you teach your kids about the responsibility of making money, buying items, and spending with cards, you can help them experience the real deal by setting up a custodial bank account that they can use and you can monitor. Allow them to see how much they have in their account, buy something they like, and review their account again to see how much is left. 


Many kids will get excited and want to buy more but realize they only have so much to spend. Now is the time to teach them about budgeting, which you can do through the use of apps. There are many budgeting apps out there to consider, including BusyKid, which is a chore-based system. Money is added to the app when they complete chores around the house. Then, they can see how many chores they must do to have enough to buy something they want. If they can’t afford it, they’ll have to do more chores and wait until later.


At any point, you can also teach your kids about preparing for the future by putting money in high-interest savings accounts. Explain how many accounts have higher interest rates and how they earn more than they would with more basic accounts. When your teens show interest in college, you can prepare them for the future by showing them how to shop online and apply for student loans.


Play Games About Money


There are many great apps and games that can teach children and teens about the full spectrum of finance topics in a fun and engaging way. 


You can find apps for every age group. The youngest kids can try a game like Wise Pockets, where a furry koala bear teaches about saving and spending. There’s also Fruit Shoot Coins, an action game where the children aim and shoot fruit with certain dollar amounts listed on it.


As your kids become teens, you can bring in new apps that match their interests in real life. For instance, Financial Football and soccer games help fans learn about money management by answering questions and playing the sports they love. Teens interested in investing can play games online that teach about stock markets and options.


Kids who enjoy video games can play video games that teach money management skills. Role-playing and simulation fans can play Animal Crossing and portray cute little animals as they complete tasks for money, like selling goods and working with a raccoon to pay for a house. There are also sports games like NBA 2K, where you earn money by winning basketball games and can use it on in-game apparel and skills. Players need to manage the in-game currency properly to succeed and they can carry those budgeting skills over into their lives outside the game.


Conclusion


The tips and games discussed here are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to ways to teach young people about financial literacy and money management in the digital age. Be an active part of your child’s education, and you’ll set them up for success as adults.

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