Taking a risk can be fun and even rewarding, but if events don’t go as you wish they can end up being devastating. Understanding all of the consequences is a must when making a decision to take a risk. Our Financial Adventure Activity – Kids Understanding Risks helps kids and teens realize what is involved when they decide to take a risk.
One way you can show your kids and teens how taking a risk works is to hold a family raffle. To do this, you would want to allow family members to “purchase” raffle tickets using play money, candy coins or other items of interest to the family. Decide on how many tickets you would have available for purchase and let each family member decide if they want to purchase tickets or not. Make sure the item to be won is something all family members would be interested in winning.
Begin the activity by letting all members of the family know how the raffle will work. Describe the risks involved when they purchase the tickets and explain that only one person will actually win and all others will have a chance to win but may not. If you are using candy coins, you might want to mention that if they didn’t purchase any of the tickets, they would be guaranteed to keep their candy coins and could eat them if they wanted. Also explain when they purchased the raffle tickets they no longer have their candy coins, and there is a possibility of not getting anything in return. Are they still interested in taking the risk? What are the odds that they will win? Is taking the risk worth losing their candy coins?
Once the tickets have been purchased, hold your drawing and find your winner. Talk about how each member feels after the raffle. How does the winner feel? Did they do a good job of taking a risk? How do all of the other family members feel about not winning? Do they now wish they had not taken the risk? How would each person feel if they were using real money? Would it put a different perspective on the risk since they may be working harder to earn that money?
Continue to talk to your kids and teens about risks that are taken by people. Be sure to include examples of risks that you take and how you decide if it is a good risk to take. Talk about why or why not you decide to take those risks.
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