“I Gave Up My Consulting Career To Work At School” - How To Teach A Child About Financial Literacy

“I Gave Up My Consulting Career To Work At School” - How To Teach A Child About Financial Literacy
“I Gave Up My Consulting Career To Work At School” - How To Teach A Child About Financial Literacy

Video: “I Gave Up My Consulting Career To Work At School” - How To Teach A Child About Financial Literacy

Video: “I Gave Up My Consulting Career To Work At School” - How To Teach A Child About Financial Literacy
Video: Financial illiteracy in the school curriculum | Kieron Sweeney | TEDxStanleyPark 2023, March

Once I just enjoyed teaching a lesson …


I graduated from the Financial and Economic University in St. Petersburg and during my studies I managed to work at the stock exchange, in a large automobile company, in a Finnish manufacturing company.

By the last year of university, I had accumulated experience to work in the consulting company BCG. And it was then that I first came across an advertisement for the "Teacher for Russia" program.

The advertisement stated that the program selected professionals from various fields, prepares them for school and sends them to work as a teacher in Russian schools in difficult socio-economic contexts. Unexpectedly for myself, I applied.

I was not supported at home. This decision seemed strange to me myself. I could not find rational arguments for myself and decided that I would fill out an application and see what happened next.

The qualifying round for the program took place at the BCG office. I realized that my intuition did not disappoint me, because this is a great way to get to know from the inside the company in which I recently wanted to work. But when I came to the selection, I forgot for all 8 hours that I was in BCG.

Ekaterina Trushina at the lesson on financial literacy

It was interesting for me to lead a lesson, meet people from education, and complete assignments. I left absolutely happy. By the time I was invited to the program, so much had been done that I could not refuse.

When You Trust Your Intuition Some people may find this strange, but I trust my intuition. For some reason, I was sure that this opportunity appeared for a reason and it was important.

I read the poem "Three Palms" by Mikhail Lermontov and realized that this is an opportunity cost curve.

I was going to work as a teacher of economics and social studies, but in Moscow school 554 I was hired as a teacher of literature. There was an irony of fate in this, but it was she who allowed me to find a business that I truly fell in love with. Once my class and I were reading the poem "Three Palms" by Mikhail Lermontov, and I could not get rid of the thought that this example can easily build a curve of production possibilities. We asked ourselves such questions: “Why are palm trees unhappy with their life? What destroys the peace and harmony that the first stanzas of the poem breathe?"

Suddenly, I asked the class: "What factors of production would you attribute palm trees to?" There was silence. I made a graph and tried to explain the poem to the children from an economic point of view.

Then we had a dispute between "lyricists" and "economists" about the use of natural resources and the proper attitude to nature. We raised the important problem of the relationship between man and nature, consumer relations for the sake of momentary desires.

Ekaterina Trushina attending a financial literacy master class

Through the prism of the poem, I managed to get to one of the main economic topics - how people use limited resources to satisfy unlimited needs. The lesson went well, so I didn't stop at one example. For example, I realized that through "Crime and Punishment" it is possible to explain the activities of microfinance organizations, the lending scheme. You can learn a lot about taxes through Dead Souls; you can analyze the budget of the Karenin family and draw conclusions about the structure of life in a particular era.

So I redesigned the school course in economics … After a series of inspiring lessons, I went to the principal and asked him to introduce economics into the school course. Starting next year, I became the head of the economic direction, which included three specialized classes.

When I picked up the textbooks on economics, I fell into a stupor. It is one thing to explain the curve of production possibilities using the example of "Three Palms", another thing is to somehow disassemble dry theory, and this is how the textbooks were written: not a single living case and actual example.

I tried to explain the theory and realized that children are not very interested. Once in class, I put aside the textbook and just asked the students what questions they have that might relate to our subject. The first hand went up: "Why are some people rich and others poor?" Then another one: “Why are the prices for similar products so different?”, “Why do people live well in some countries, but in others there is nothing to eat?”, “Is it true that there are no discounts?”. So we collected about 120 questions, and I scattered them along the course of economics. It turned out that by answering them, we will be able to complete the program in a year and even cover the topics that are coming to us only in 2-3 years.

Each lesson began with a question. Throughout the course, we started from the real needs and interests of students.

After six months of classes, the guys from the 10th grade and I went to the case championship at Moscow State University. Not a single school team went there except us. All the rest were students of MGIMO, Moscow State University, NRU HSE and other universities. My guys took 4th place - it was our big victory.

… and opened financial literacy courses. When I distributed all the questions on economics, it turned out that a large block dealt with the topic of financial literacy, that is, with the problems associated with the personal money of children. But this topic was not included in the course of economics.

These problems were of a smaller, rather domestic nature, but the children were much more interested. Then I decided to open financial literacy courses at the school.

In the classroom, children learned how to verify the authenticity of the site, make payments safely, learned what an investment is, when insurance is needed, what trends are in the world of fintech and how this can affect our future. After a while, I wrote my textbook on financial literacy for grades 10-11. Now it is included in the federal list of textbooks, and any school can officially study using it. I tried to write it in the most accessible language, cite actual cases as an example, choose the most effective methods of teaching a specific topic.

And then a mobile bank appeared with training in financial literacy. During classes with schoolchildren, I found out that children really have money. But they are not safe for a number of reasons.

First, children often lose money or are stolen by bullies. Secondly, children lend to each other and do not always return. Thirdly, children often try to save a certain amount for a desire, but they cannot. Children also try to make financial transactions online and make many mistakes.

I realized that today schoolchildren do not have any financial instrument that would tell them how to act correctly and effectively.

Adults have mobile banks, bank cards, deposits, applications that help analyze income and expenses, buy stocks and bonds from a smartphone, while children have nothing. But there is money.

So I got the idea to create a children's mobile bank that would also teach financial literacy. I found a Moscow team that already worked in the field of financial technologies, and came to them with a proposal to create the first children's mobile bank with educational elements. The app is called PandMoney. Now it has 10 thousand downloads, it was included in the rating of the most attractive applications for the Western market, along with Telegram and LinguaLeo. Our team was invited to the closed state accelerator in Japan. We have received several offers from banks in Japan, Singapore and Europe. Now we have taken only a small step: we have released an electronic piggy bank, sewn part of the banking mechanics inside, and prepared a prototype of a children's bank. Our team has big plans ahead. I believe in this idea and I know for sure that this will really help children.

Now I periodically teach, conduct games, master classes on financial literacy, travel with in different cities of Russia.

In parallel with this, I manage financial literacy projects at Sberbank and, of course, develop a children's bank project. All these numerous projects, ideas and opportunities that have appeared in my life simply would not have taken place without the experience of working as a teacher in an ordinary general education school. Still, my intuition did not disappoint me.

How to teach your child about financial literacy

Let your child participate in family planning. For example, plan your child's birthday budget with him. So he will learn to make decisions on a limited budget, understand that desires do not always correspond to the possibilities, and some things can be replaced with cheaper analogs. You can also jointly make decisions about large purchases, think with your child about all the cons and advantages of this purchase, calculate how much will be required to purchase a product and whether it is possible to pay it in full at once. Thus, your child will be able to get acquainted with the basics of family planning, as well as in a real situation will be able to face the concepts of credit, installments, leasing and more.

Ask your child to calculate the cost of their education. As a follow-up to the planning topic, you can ask your child to make a list of everything needed for the school year. It will be useful for him to calculate and plan the amount of funds that we spend monthly and annually on the education of our children - from the office to tutors.

Introduce children to the professions of the future and view the effort, time and money spent on training as an investment. Invite your child to choose one of the professions and decide (be sure to consider and discuss the professions of the future) what knowledge and skills she needs. Let the child himself tell you what you need to invest your time, energy, knowledge and money in to master this profession. Through investment in knowledge, concepts such as stocks and bonds can later be explained.

Let your child help you figure out digital. If you have been standing in line at the bank for a long time, do not hesitate to ask your child to understand the mobile applications of this bank that can make your life easier. Most likely, the child will find information faster, and your trust, perhaps, motivates him to learn in this area.

Don't give ready-made answers. For example, if your child wants a smartphone, don't buy it yourself. Ask your child to analyze several sites, compare characteristics, find analogues, check site ratings. Ask your child questions: why do you think it is more expensive here? does the warranty affect the price? what are the insurance conditions? Motivate your child to think.

Play financial literacy games. The child develops economic thinking when he builds a city or enterprise, makes decisions about deposits and loans, sees the consequences of decisions. There are many exciting board games in this area: Cashflow, Monopoly, Investor 3000, Startup, LibertEx. If the child, for example, loves computer games, you can invite him to play Financial Football, Financial game, Your finances, Virtonomics and the game "ZhEKA".

Transfer children from paper money to electronic money. This will protect children from theft and loss of money, and they will also be able to analyze income and expenses using applications. Many banks offer to issue an additional child's card to the parent's card. Up to 14 years old, you can get prepaid cards with a limited deposit amount. There are also cards that are issued in conjunction with electronic wallets. The parent can decide for himself whether the child is ready to use the card without parental control.

Encourage your child to save money for desires. As soon as the child begins to save for an important goal, he gets rid of impulsive spending.

Make an agreement. If your child is a fan of online games, set a limit that the child cannot go beyond. Remember that the form of cooperation is much better than control.

Invite your child to read interesting books on financial literacy:

"Children and money" E. Bliskavki for children 8-10 years old

"Novice Investor" G. Karlitsa, "Amazing Adventures in the Country of Economy I. Lipsitsa" for children 11-13 years old

"Young Investor" K. Bateman, "A Dog Named Mani" B. Schaeffer for children 14-16 years old

"Money or the alphabet of money" B. Schaeffer for children 17-18 years old

Don't forget to learn financial literacy yourself. There is also a list of useful books for this:

"Children and First Money" R. Petemkin and E. Kavakevich

"Rich child, smart child" K. Robert and S. Lecter

"Why do excellent students work for C grade students, and good students for the state?" K. Robert

“Children and money. Raising a millionaire "E. Krasavin and E. Brodnikov

"A million for my daughter" V. Savenyuk

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