Nancy Itzel May 1, 2020 Money Worksheets
Once my son started working a real job and had taxable income, I made him a deal that if he started an IRA with $500 and $50/month, I would match for the first year. After a couple education sessions, he jumped on it! It's a great way to jump-start their retirement savings AND further teach the greatest wonder of the personal finance world: compound interest.
As a parent it is always exciting to see children progress to another grade. There are a number of summer bridge activities that a child can take part in to make sure they are ready for 2nd grade. These range from direct learning activities such as worksheets or practicing skills online to teaching opportunities in the real world.
Just because your child will be playing fun online games doesn't mean the same value won't be there. Create a comfortable study zone. Turn off outside distractions such as cell phones, radios or TVs. Make sure your child is not tired or hungry so that he or she can focus all attention on learning. Also try to keep the lessons consistent with what is being learned in school. A quick chat with the teacher or signing up for an online newsletter from the classroom are ways to keep tabs on the lesson plans.
Many online math games are designed purely for entertainment and won't do much in terms of teaching your child. While these games can be fun and engaging for third graders, you want to choose games that will practice the skills being taught in school. Look for games and puzzles that are part of an adaptive learning program. This means that the online games are well-thought out and match the same set of skills that are being taught in the third grade curriculum. The program is structured toward each individual student and fills in the gaps where the child is struggling.
I'm not a proponent of young kids investing in the stock market. But as they get older you can encourage them to think about saving for their future and retirement. Show the older kids stock charts from the past 50-60 years and note the strong upward trend over long periods of time. With 50+ years before they retire, and by starting to save a little bit now, the Compound Interest will kick in big time!
In general, most K-12 schools do not offer education in personal finance, budgeting, balancing checkbooks, or any other aspect of how to become a good financial steward. It is up to us as parents to instill good habits, so that when our adult kids come to visit, we can enjoy their company and not feel like the "Bank of Dad."
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