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13 Financial Literacy Games For Children And Adults (Gamification Resources)

How do most kids learn to excel at the important things in life? Education and practice are the main ingredients. Yet most kids don’t learn enough of what it takes to manage their money from childhood and beyond.

In fact, in December of 2019, The National Financial Educators Council (NFEC) asked nearly 7,000 teens and young adults (aged 15-18) across all 50 states to respond to a test measuring their current personal finance knowledge. This 30-question quiz assessed respondents’ capability to earn, save, and grow wealth. According to the results, the average level of money management knowledge among the sample was 64.9%.

Luckily, awareness of this issue is on the rise, and high school students in 21 states must now take a personal finance course to graduate.

When young people understand how to manage money, they are equipped with a skill that is key to making their dreams a reality.

 

Why is financial literacy important?

Financial literacy is key to understanding how to save, earn, borrow, invest, and protect your money wisely. It is also essential to developing short- and long-term financial habits and skills that lead to greater financial well-being.

 

Now, more than ever

At least 72% of students say personal finance stresses them out and the current world health crisis cause by COVID-19 could put an added financial burden on many young people. Now more than ever, students need education and resources to help them understand how to make it through these difficult financial times.

DoSomething.org is doing just that. Something. The largest organization for young people and social change launched “Would You Rather?”, a nationwide financial literacy campaign that teaches young people how to make and save money, while social distancing during COVID-19

 

 

Through “Would You Rather?”, young people are invited to answer five amusing financial questions. Questions like: To save money, would you rather… a) Share a cellphone with your grandma? or b) Share a closet with your ex? (A. Definitely A for us)

Upon completing each question, test-takers receive a personal finance tip along with comprehensive digital personal finance guides. You can take that quiz here.

 

Let the (financial literacy) games begin.

While not new, gamification has become an increasingly popular and legitimate way to teach students of all ages useful skills and concepts. For something like money education that can be dry and dull if taught in another format, it can be a lifesaver.

There’s a big difference between which financial literacy lessons are valuable to a 5-year-old than a 15-year-old. To make the best financial literacy games for your kids easy to pinpoint, below are suggestions, divided by age group.

 

Grades K-5

Before you can focus on more complicated concepts like saving and investments, kids have to learn the basic concepts of what money is and what different bills and coins are worth. Here are five more game suggestions for your little money-mavens:

  1. Learning Coins – Learning Coins from ABCYa provides kids with an introduction to what each of the different coins is, how to recognize them, and what they’re worth.
  2. Money Bingo – Also from ABCYa, Money Bingo lets kids put their coin knowledge to use, along with some math skills, to fill a virtual bingo card.
  3. Dolphin Feed – Once you’ve mastered those first two games, ABCYa has one more financial literacy game for students at a slightly higher level. Dolphin Feed lets you compete against other kids to see who can make the right change the fastest.
  4. Escape from Barter Island – Escape from Barter Island helps kids learn just why we use money, to begin with. It teaches what bartering is and shows why it’s less practical than currency. This one does require some reading, so you might need to help the younger kids out with it.
  5. Dollar Dive – From the U.S. Mint, Dollar Dive is a cross between Dolphin Feed and Space Invaders – your character has to “catch” coins as they fly above to make enough money to move forward.

Grades 5-8

  1. Financial Football – From Visa’s Practical Money initiative, Financial Football mixes financial literacy in with America’s favorite sport (for kids that prefer soccer, they have an alternate version).
  2. Hot Shot Business – Hot Shot Business takes kids to Opportunity City and gives them a chance to run a popular local business – with all the challenges and successes that come with it.
  3. Lights, Camera, Budget – This game puts your child in the role of a movie producer. They’ll be given a $100 million budget to create a 5-star movie.
  4. Break The Bank  – Brought to you by Biz Kids. This game puts you in the role of a worker at a community bank, helping customers get good loans and save for their future. But wait, you must go against Mr. Boar and his clerks from a payday loan company. Learn the ethics of banking and debt in this fun game.
  5. Hit The Road – This Oregon Trail-inspired game takes you on a road trip across America. Learn the importance of saving and creating a budget, responsible spending, and debt management.

High school and beyond

  1. Get a Life – Get a Life lets students pick a career and then create a budget and make other spending decisions based on the monthly salary that comes with it.
  2. The Stock Market Game – Learn to play the stock market without the risk. Students can get a feel for how investing works, the risks involved, and which investments are the best choice.
  3. Invest Quest – Modeled after a board game, Invest Quest helps older students test their financial knowledge to better understand how to make good investments.
  4. Misadventures in Money Management – The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau created a  fun online game for teens using a graphic-novel theme. Topics covered include: avoiding impulse purchases, how debt can affect a military career, and much more.
  5. The Uber Game – Can a person survive on a job in the “gig economy”? That’s what this game attempts to reveal to your students. They’ll be given an urgent financial need (such as – your mortgage of $1,000 is due in a week), and then will need to accept gig jobs from Uber in order to try and save up enough to pay their bills.
  6. Payback – This financial simulation game can help teens make better life decisions. They’ll pick out careers and majors based on simulating what kinds of jobs they might find when they graduate, and how much their student loans might be.

We can’t forget the grown-ups 

Let’s be real. Financial literacy learning isn’t just for kids. We ‘kids at heart’ could always use a refresher on topics like managing debt, using credit cards, and protecting your identity. We’ve rounded up a few great places to start your extra-curricular learning.

  1. Invest in You: Money 101 – CBNC offers this 8-week learning course to financial freedom for free and that’s not even the best part. It’s delivered directly to your inbox weekly. Talk about barely having to lift a finger.
  2. Money Basics – Smart About Money’s Money Basics courses help you to form a healthy financial foundation for the rest of your personal finance journey. Each course takes approximately 45 minutes to complete and includes valuable tools and resources including worksheets, calculators, and quizzes.

Financial literacy in your local community

We are huge supporters of financial literacy in our communities. On top of our library of financial resources, we also offer monthly financial literacy webinars and seminars. Check out our calendar for upcoming events or check out our YouTube channel to see recordings of past webinars.

Take financial education to the next level with a Fitzsimons’ youth account. Our youth accounts offer perks like yearly birthday checks, free teen checking accounts with rewards, and seasonal matching deposit bonuses. Schedule an appointment at one of our branches to open a youth account, today!

 

This blog post was originally posted on Kasasa’s website