Don't you love the logo? "Your Teen's Financial Fitness: Make it Real, Make it Matter, Make it Last."
I appreciate that, as practical as the videos are, they also spend quite a bit of time discussing mindsets about money. They carefully examine different stereotypes people have about money, the rich, and the poor, and help to build a healthy attitude about taking responsibility for your own money. I should note that it is not a Bible-based program and the purpose really is to help kids learn how to build wealth. It seems rather foolish now, when you stop to read the name of the program, but I was genuinely surprised at how the program emphasizes the end-goal of getting rich. However, the methods used fully fall in line with Biblical principles (including 10% "giving") and do not conflict with Christian values. Also, even though there were several comments about getting rich, the end RESULT of the program is a healthy attitude about making your money work for you and being able to meet responsibilities comfortably.
I think the "get rich" comments are geared towards teenagers who are daydreaming about such things. It is a great hook for garnering their interest. Currently, our economy is in such condition that even teens and children have a different perspective about money than we had at that age. The dream of being fabulously wealthy has been replaced with the hope to "able to pay my bills and take care of my family". This program was created before the downturn and will hopeful inspire more dreaming, which is required for improving the economy anyway.
The program begins with 7 videos. These teach the things you need to know "in order to become rich". These things, in order are:
- Financial Literacy
- Money Management System
- Really Good Reason
- Habits and Attitudes
- Financial Freedom
The videos are interactive, requiring students to hit pause occasionally and complete online questions and quizzes. At the end of each module, students are asked to print out the lesson to add to their binder.
In addition to the videos, the program also includes a 33-page downloadable Quick-Start E-Book. The program also encourages students to set up practice accounts through a free online program called Money Trail. It's worth exploring, even if you don't use WealthQuest. A free parent guide helps parents to follow along and support their students. It is a 60-page downloadable E-book.
One very practical aspect of the program is the Silo-system for sorting your money and priorities. It's very similar to another popular program's envelope system. It's a beautiful concept that works very well, especially for us visual learners. These are organized as follows:
-Future Financial Freedom - 10%
-Giving (Heal the World, according to the program, tithing according to our version) - 10%
-Saving - 10%
-Learning - 10%
-Fun Spending - 10%
-Necessities - 50%
Just a couple of mild frustrations:
- You cannot rewind videos. There is a pause button if you need to walk away for a bit, but if you miss something, you have to watch the entire video from the beginning to watch any of it again
- The videos refer to an Advanced Seminar and information that will be learned in those sessions. However, at this time there is no Advanced Seminar. It is still only in the idea stage.
It has been interesting to watch financial discussions begin with my children. We've had many discussions about the economy, but not personal finance. We don't do allowances in our house, so there has been little need for much money management for my kids. But my oldest is 15 and it is certainly time to begin teaching him responsibility in this area. He'll be old enough for a job next year. Will he work that job to pay for random entertainment or will he make that money work for him?
The course takes 6 weeks to complete and costs $39.95 for 1 year's access.
The program is intended for high-school students aged 14-19, but Joel (my 12 year old) followed along just fine.
Disclaimer: I received this material in exchange for my honest opinion as a member of the TOS Crew, and received no other form of compensation. For whatever they're worth, the opinions are mine and mine alone, as stated in my disclosure policy.