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#2 Friends and Peers…what impact can we have?

At the session on educating kids about money at the MONEYWI$E Women Conference, the second pick for how kids learn about money was their friends and peers.

Strategy 1: When kids are younger, engage them in activities that will lead to peer groups you prefer.

This may be 4-H or Boys and Girls Club. It can include encouraging they start with an instrument so they’ll be drawn toward band or orchestra in high school. It can also include community soccer or T-ball at a young age. If you are part of a community of worship, how about the youth group?

Strategy 2: As kids get older, continue to encourage and make transportation available if possible for the activities that pair them with other kids with the values you are trying to reinforce.

Let’s face it. As children get older, we have less and less decision-making over who they choose as friends and mentors. At the same time, those friends and mentors have greater influence.

It stands to reason that by then, the foundation needs to be set. That does not mean the game is over. Continue to nudge in the right direction. Sometimes, you can even use some of the choices their peers are making as an object lesson without putting down their friend.

Strategy 3: Decisions about TV, Computer and Video games

That one I’ll share in the next post, because TV, Computer and Video games came in third as a significant source for how kids learn about money.

About the Author
Linda Keith CPA is an expert in credit risk readiness and credit analysis. She trains banks and credit unions throughout the United States, both in-house and in open-enrollment sessions, on Tax Return and Financial Statement Analysis. She is in the trenches with lenders, analysts and underwriters helping them say "yes" to good loans. Creator of the Tax Return Analysis Virtual Classroom at www.LendersOnlineTraining.com, she speaks at banking associations on risk management, lending and director finance topics.