Mint.com takes financial ed. to middle school

Faith Merino · December 20, 2010 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/150c

Mint.com's parent company Intuit has partnered with Scholastic

I wish I’d had a more thorough financial education growing up.  The end of each monthly bill-paying session ends in tears when I look at my bank statement and realize where all of my money has gone.  To keep other children from growing up to end up like me, Mint.com’s parent company Intuit announced Monday morning a partnership with Scholastic to develop classroom materials to help middle-school aged children develop a better understanding of personal finances.

The materials will include lesson plans for teachers, worksheets for parents who want to continue the lessons at home, family activities, and an online interactive game.  The materials will connect math problems to events in everyday life to emphasize the importance of money management, budgeting, and goals.  Overall, the goal of the program is to teach children financial concepts in clear, accessible language and using relevant examples, like getting a babysitting job to pay for a new bike.

But why middle-schoolers?  According to a company spokesperson, who spoke to me via email: “The choice of middle-schoolers was based on an anecdotal learning that many Americans have about a fifth-grade level of financial literacy, so content focused on the next stage can be broadly helpful—for current middle school students and others seeking insight.”

The program is based on the results of a recent Intuit Town Hall Money Matters Consumer Survey, in which 46% of respondents said that schools should bear the most responsibility in teaching children about finances. 

The lesson plans will be available online for teachers on Scholastic’s website beginning December 20, and materials will be distributed among 30,000 classrooms in early 2011.

“The goal of the curriculum is to provide a free, fun way to serve a distinct need,” said an Intuit spokesperson via email.  “For years, Mint has been tapped by governmental and not-for-profit agencies to help fill this need—and now, the combination of Mint.com’s Web savvy, and Intuit’s leadership in all things finance, we’ve been able to take on the issue of financial curriculum with a leader like Scholastic who can help ensure we’ll reach kids and families.”

Mint.com is Intuit’s free personal finance software service, which allows users to access information about bank accounts, credit cards, loans, and more from one dashboard.  The service displays a breakdown showing the user where his or her money is going and ways that the user can budget better to meet financial goals.  The service launched in September 2007 and according to the company, more than 90% of users say that they have changed their financial habits after using the service.

Intuit is the business and financial management solutions provider that developed such products and services as QuickBooks, Quicken, and TurboTax. 

Image source: Mint.com

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