The sun is still shining and the feelings of summer are lingering, however, slowly but surely, the signs of fall are creeping in as everyone heads back to the classroom. Chances are most of your students spent at least part of the summer hard at work, whether it was tutoring, scooping ice cream, working retail or just mowing their parents’ lawns. Regardless, they likely did something to stir up some spending money. Below are some financial literacy lessons to impart to your students, advising them on how stretch their summer earnings as far as possible.
1.Evaluate your spending – It’s important that students carefully evaluate their spending. Complete an exercise with your students to walk through their weekly spending. This exercise should call out any bad spending habits – like that every day after school slice of pizza – that are hurting their finances.
2. Make a budget – At the core of every successful financial plan is a solid budget. Work with your students to make a budget for the school year, considering those big spending moments such as the holidays, birthdays and other events. Estimate how much they can spend each month, based on how much they’ve earned this summer, to help them make the most of their hard earned summer paychecks.
3. Save – High school students may feel it’s too early to start thinking seriously about saving, but an important lesson in financial literacy is that it is truly never too early. The financially trying days of college will be upon your students before they know it, so encourage them to put away a little money now – they’ll thank you later!
4. Grow your earnings – Even the strongest budget could benefit from some extra funds to work with. To close out this lesson, encourage your students to explore ways to earn money during the school year, every experience earning and dealing with money only improves their financial literacy skills!
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“Wow, I love your shirt,” I recently overheard my younger sister telling a friend.
“Thanks,” the friend replied, sharing that she purchased the shirt at a local boutique.
“I love their clothes, but they’re so expensive,” my sister commented. (And she’s right—they were expensive when I was her age, too!)
“Girl, that’s why you need to get one of these!” the friend said proudly, whipping out a shiny store credit card.