3 Ideas to Share and Save – 034

Memo from the Chief Mammal Header

“Working to help parents raise money-smart kids.”

Hi, folks.

No preamble today.

Let’s get right to this week’s 3 Ideas to Share and Save.

— 1 —

Credit Union Course: I was fortunate to bring my Art of Allowance Academy course to one of the country’s largest financial institutions, the Bay Area’s Patelco Credit Union, this past week. I love teaching these courses, and I particularly love building my own knowledge. Every experience with parents who want to learn how to raise money-smart kids reminds me of a wonderful quote that I shared with you in a September newsletter:

“The teacher learns more than the student. The author learns more than the reader. The speaker learns more than the attendee. The way to learn is by doing.”

— James Clear

I always learn so much from the participants, which in turn makes my future classes even better. If you’re interested in bringing The Art of Allowance Academy to your credit union, then you can find out more here.

Because I’m a Seahawks fan and I was talking to folks in the Bay Area, I was able to incorporate Cal Berkley product and Oakland native Marshawn Lynch into my presentation. It may surprise you to learn that “Beast Mode,” as he was affectionately called in his playing days, has become a life mentor to young NFL players by encouraging them to “take care of yo’ chicken.” By “chicken,” of course, he means money. He even has shirts!

John Lanza talks about financial literacy promoter Marshawn Lynch

— 2 —

Debit Cards for Kids: My Bay Area friend, FamZoo creator and previous podcast guest Bill Dwight appeared in an article by another former podcast guest, Ron Lieber. As is typical of Ron, the proliferation of debit cards now available on the market was addressed thoughtfully. If you’re trying to figure out whether you want your child to have a debit card and what provider you should consider, then Ron’s article is a good place to start.

Bill’s FamZoo card was one of the first on the market, and in Ron’s article he addresses an issue that I’ve been thinking about a lot:

“‘Those vendors are not afraid to hoodwink kids into spending,’ said Bill Dwight, who was among the first to build a kid-focused debit card when his FamZoo card debuted in 2013.”

Many apps and their cards claim to teach children financial literacy. In reality, they are simply tools in your parental kit. They can help you teach your kids about money smarts, but you’re going to need a plan. Given without context, these cards can act like Trojan Horses that get into your children’s pockets and unleash a world of frictionless spending.

— 3 —

Accountant on a Mission: I’m currently enjoying Robin Taub’s new book, The Wisest Investment. She’s a Canadian CPA who fittingly describes herself as “not your typical accountant.” I’ve interviewed Robin on the podcast, and she’ll be making her second appearance soon. We’re talking about the book this week, so look for more in an upcoming episode.

A theme Robin talks about in The Wisest Investment is that to raise our kids to be money-smart, we need to be money-smart ourselves. Of course, this doesn’t mean that we have to be perfect to get started. Far from it.

I’ve often discussed this topic on my podcast with other money experts, and I’ve discovered that the more we parents can embrace the opportunity to improve our teaching by learning with our kids, the better off we’ll be.

Let’s take a lesson from school teachers. Do the best teachers enter the classroom in their mid-20s as the best educators they will ever be? Of course not. As much as they are trained and capable of instructing our children from day one, they are still learning and improving on the job. The best teachers get better every year. If we want to be the best money-smart teachers for our kids, then we should expect to be learning on the job too.

By the way, if you have any nagging questions about how to raise money-smart kids that you’d like me to ask Robin this week, then please email me. I’d love to hear from you.

I hope that you enjoyed these 3 Ideas to Share and Save and that they help you on your own money-smart journey.

Until next week, thanks again for reading.

John, Chief Mammal

P.S. Please consult with a financial or investment professional before engaging in any decisions that might affect your own financial well-being.

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