Financial literacy, or knowing how to spend and save money, is an important part of learning how to be a responsible adult. The sooner that you learn how to create a budget and save money, the more money you may have to spend on things that you want or items that you will need in the future. Printable worksheets and interactive tools can set you on the right path to budgeting, while making smart consumer choices and being practical with your money can help you save. Below, you will find information and advice on how to budget and save, no matter how old you are. Games are even included to make learning about money fun!
Creating a Budget
Learning how to manage your money can play a big role in saving as much money as you can. Creating a budget will help you set limits, and learn how to spend within them, so that you can get the most out of your money. Before you can responsibly plan how your money in spent, you’ll need to learn what a budget is. Below are some resources that explain budgets for every age group. You’ll even find worksheets and other printable documents that can help you plan out your particular finances.
- Beginner Budgeting for Every Age: Here, kids can find hands-on ways they can view and manage money. Sharing jars, spending jars, short-term saving, and long-term saving are discussed.
- Counting Money Worksheets and Lessons: These printable worksheets and play money graphics help very young children learn the value of money.
- Hands on Banking 4.0 for Kids: These interactive lessons about budgeting, savings and credit are perfect for small children who are just learning about money.
- What is Debt?: Treasury Direct Kids explains what debt is to young children.
- Federal Reserve Kids Page: The Federal Reserve offers a number of activities for children to help them learn about money and banking. Games and simulations are grouped by grades.
- Managing Money: Create a Budget: This article gives kids specific instructions on how to create a budget. A blank budgeting sheet is also linked within the article.
- Who Will Teach Our Youth to Manage Money?: Frugality Nation offers a number of “session” videos to help kids learn how to budget and save.
There are many easy ways that you can save money. They all, however, begin with a good understanding of the value of money and smart financial habits. Below are several articles and interactive tools that will help you learn how to save, so that you can stretch your dollars and have more money to spend later. Saving strategies are included for all age groups.
- Saving Money for Kids: This website provides information for kids about financial literacy and saving and donating money.
- Wise Pockets’ Library: A series of articles help young children learn about credit, saving and earning money. The format of these articles are like illustrated books.
- How to Save for Something Big: Kidzworld offers tips on how to save for an item.
- Start Smart: Money Management for Teens: This lengthy guide teaches teens money-saving and spending tactics. It also provides an overview of banking basics.
- Ten Sneaky Saving Strategies: Written for the college-age kid, these strategies can help young adults save money quickly and easily. After a while, these strategies can become second nature, and savings can increase exponentially with little effort.
- 5 Easy Saving Strategies for Kids: Though written for grandparents who want to help their grandchildren learn about money, these five easy strategies can be understood and followed by kids.
- 20 Things Kids Need to Know to Live Financially Smart Lives: These tips are separated by age, and emphasize saving techniques.
One of the easiest ways to learn about money is to play games that were created with financial responsibility in mind. There are a number of free games and online tools available that can help you learn how to budget, save, and spend in interactive environments without having to lose any money yourself. Some of these tools are based in reality, and can give you an idea of what kind of money is involved in maintaining your present lifestyle or the one that you want to have in the future. There are even games designed to help you learn how to identify fraud, so that you can protect the money you earn throughout the course of your lifetime.
- For Me, For You, For Later: Sesame Street offers these fun, interactive videos to help teach young children about the value of spending and saving money.
- Learn to Count Money: Designed for children in grades 3-5, this money-counting game teaches students how to use coins and bills.
- Piggy Bank Adventure: Disney offers a piggy bank game that lets children understand and manage money. The game is designed for children between ages 8 and 14, and teaches the concepts of planning, saving and investing.
- H.I.P Pocket Change: The U.S. Mint provides a game that can teach children about budgeting, saving and even investing money.
- It All Adds Up: This interactive tool helps children learn the value of money and its responsible management. Lines of credit and major purchases like cars and college tuition are also explored.
- Reality Check: This game allows children to imagine the kind of life they want to live and financially plan for it. The actual costs of living, and the financial cost of luxuries, are explored.
- Financial Literacy for Everyone: These games help teach students about money in fantasy and real-world scenarios. Money is tied to a number of scenarios, including those featuring piggy banks, football leagues, road trips, and role-playing opportunities.
- Financial Entertainment: These games teach financial independence and responsibility.
- Fraud Scene Investigator: This game helps kids learn how to identify fraud, so that they can protect their money and investments.
Written by Rachel Summit