Kids taught finances at subsidized camp
Children at five Vancouver elementary schools are learning financial skills. SUBMITTED
Children at five Vancouver elementary schools are learning financial skills through a summer camp program sponsored in part by the city’s school board — critical skills that educators say are not taught comprehensively in regular class.
Gerhard Maynard is the executive director at KidSafe, which operates spring, summer and winter break programs for kids at five schools in the city, Grandview, Macdonald, Thunderbird, Nightingale and Queen Alexandra.
KidSafe serves about 400 children, and as part of its leadership program — for Grade 7 students only — one of KidSafe’s supporters, Credential Financial, is helping out this year to teach the ins and outs of managing money.
“They’re doing a lot of things around how to manage expenses, cost of living, setting goals, earning money, how to budget ... and what does it look like to have their job and money and finances,” Maynard said.
“It’s really important and that’s something that’s been identified, just in general, as a skill lacking, not something addressed in the regular curriculum at schools, or not covered in a comprehensive way.”
Matt Brown, a senior vice-president at Credential, said the company created a game called My First Summer Job as a way to use fun and games to teach.
“They’re throwing balls, running relays, matching and building puzzles, but in every game, we’ve embedded an undercurrent of financial education,” Brown said in a statement.