Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Financial literacy for kids (counting change)

Hi there folks, I hope all is well with everyone! I had a recent experience that made me re-visit financial literacy for children.     I completed my shopping from a major retail store and went to the register to pay for my goods. My total came to $36.70 and I gave the nice gentleman $40.00. Apparently, he put in $400.00 accidentally. When the amount of change due came up, I was happy but he was not!  At first he just stood there looking, trying to figure out what had just happened.        After a long pause, I told him that he had put in $400.00 instead of $40.   Now we waited to see what to do next. I could tell he was getting uncomfortable as another customer came into his line.  So I asked him if he could just make a note and give me my change as my 3 children were touching everything in sight.
It appears he was lost and could not figure out how much change to give me. So very nicely and quietly I said " you owe me $3.30" and he gave me my change and told me to have a nice day.
This really opened up my eyes to the importance of teaching children at a young age how to count change back when needed. As was the case here, no calculator was available, at best he could have used paper and pencil. 
Children don't have to be the quickest when counting out change but they should learn to be accurate and timely, just in case they are in a similar situation. This post was written, not to stand in judgement but to enlighten us to the importance of teaching our children the basic skill of counting back change. As much as I love technology, it can never take the place of using our own brains.
So as we seek to ensure that our children are financially literate, let's remember the simplicity of being able to count back change when needed. The younger they learn this basic concept, the better off they'll be as adults.

Remember: "True empowerment comes through stewardship!" 

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