The Only States That Teach Personal Finance (and What You’ll Have to Teach Kids Yourself) – Lifehacker

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Recently, Georgia became the 13th state in the country to mandate personal finance education for high school students. According to Next Gen Personal Finance, Georgia joins Alabama, Florida, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Ohio, Tennessee, Utah, and Virginia in requiring teens to take at least one semester of personal finance before they can graduate.

While this growing trend of states requiring basic financial literacy be taught in high school is encouraging, it still means that only “35% of students in the U.S. will have access to a financial literacy class,” according to CNBC. A majority of children and adolescents will still need to get this education elsewhere.

Since money management isn’t traditionally taught in schools, the responsibility falls to parents. In addition to what we’ve previously written about what to teach your kid about money at every age, here are some basic financial skills every teenager should know by the time they graduate high school.

Basic budgeting

Every teenager should be taught how to set up a realistic budget. Teach them (with your own statements) to gather financial paperwork such as W-2s and pay stubs, utility bills, credit card statements, receipts, and all other financial paperwork relevant to their (future) income and expenses. After creating a list of monthly expenses, they should know how to break them down into fixed and variable expenses. Teach them to compare their total income to expenses, so they can either make a savings plan for their monthly leftover income or determine where to cut expenses so they don’t live beyond their means.

Smart shopping

Kids and teenagers should be taught how to comparison shop, factoring in price, volume, and quantity on things like groceries, personal hygiene items, toys, sports equipment, and other incidentals—whether that be in the aisles of your local Stop ‘n Shop, or on Amazon. Take them on grocery shopping and narrate your own process of evaluating and …….


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