Press Release: New Financial Adventure Curriculum Teaches Financial Literacy To Children

New Financial Adventure Curriculum Teaches Money Basics To Children

Busy Adults Access Web Activities & Kids’ Financial Literacy Mailings

(St. Cloud, Minn. – April 1, 2015) ¬Christine Panek, a central Minnesota certified public accountant, wants children and teenagers to avoid making wrong decisions that lead to a lifetime of financial trouble. This is why Panek created Financial Adventure©, a hands-on, subscription-based financial learning program for youth. The program went “live” at on March 15, just in time for April Financial Literacy Month and just as results of a national financial literacy test were being compiled.

According to the Financial Educators Council’s results released on March 25, 46 percent of over 8,400 participants, ages 15 to 18 years old, failed its National Financial Literacy Test of 30 questions, scoring 60 percent or lower. “In my over 20 years of accounting practice, I’d see some adults who were running their own businesses, but whom were lacking the knowledge of basic financial concepts,” says Panek, who serves clients in the St. Cloud metro and surrounding areas. “Financial basics are not taught to our kids in the schools. You can find information on the Internet, but it’s unstructured, and it takes time to research what you want to teach your children. I decided in the summer of 2014 to design a program for busy parents––everything they’d need to know in order to share it with their children on a monthly basis––and build a series of lessons for kids and teenagers that were as rewarding as they were educational.”

Financial Adventure is an educational program designed to help kids and teens learn about earning, saving, spending, and sharing money through a monthly adventure packet. Parents order the fee-based subscription service, or gift subscription, online. Then, every month, their household receives a packet of age-appropriate learning tools and activities that take the kids and teenagers on a Financial Adventure Journey about banking, checking and savings accounts, credit and debt, the economy, and more. An answer sheet and tips for adults is also included, making discussions easy to share. Panek advises parents to purchase a Starter Kit for their child because its calculator, checkbook, and awards’ tracker are used each month as part of the lesson/journey.

The website also offers various free services that speak to parents about activities they can do with their children to promote financial literacy. Parents may register for free Financial Adventure Activities, delivered to their email mailbox. A certificate of achievement is also included. A monthly blog shares timely information with parents. Parents may access links to various Internet resources and tools as well. Panek also teaches her proprietary Financial Adventure Classes at various locations throughout the area. However, the curriculum is available for purchase and can be taught by any professional interested in investing in the future of our youth––banking and credit union professionals, certified public accountants, educators, financial advisors, and other professionals.

The “Financial Adventure” journeys are designed for three age groups. Piggy’s Financial Adventure is designed for children five to seven years old. Kids & Teens Financial Adventure is geared to kids from eight to eighteen. Teens Advanced Financial Adventure challenges youth 13 to 18 years old. All participants receive Financial Adventure rewards after completing a monthly journey.

Piggy’s Financial Adventure children receive a reward sticker. Kids and Teens receive a rainbow-colored ribbon. Advanced learners receive a ribbon and an advanced pin. Once a child has completed an entire year of Financial Adventure, he or she receives a rosette ribbon (Piggy’s Financial Adventure), or a medal (Kids & Teens), or a trophy (Advanced).

“Awards and trophies are often presented to children who excel in sports, but usually, not for academics,” says Panek. “We’ve incorporated various rewards into the Financial Adventure program. My own 12-year-old daughter has used the program throughout its design phase, and she still appreciates getting and collecting her Financial Adventure Ribbons. It just makes the learning all the more fun.” The financial learning concepts children and teenagers receive with the program should help them prepare for the future and change financial behaviors of today’s society, notes Panek.

You can view the press release here:

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