As hard as it may be to imagine right now, one day your kids will be making financial decisions of their own. So it’s important to train them to be responsible with the resources they have and learn how to manage their money now. If you have a some digital natives in your house now, what better way to make financial literacy fun than some apps on the smartphone? US News & World Report Money did a recent review of their favorite apps for teaching money management to the next generation. Below are a few of our favorites.
Saving Spree — Here’s a reverse take on the traditional spending spree. In this game, the goal is for kids to grow a nest egg by making smart saving and spending decisions. They earn money by doing things like frosting cupcakes to earn funds. No free money here. If you don’t want your kids growing up thinking money grows on trees, this may be a good place to start.
Green$treet: Unleash the Loot! — The focus here is on budgeting. With a defined budget to start, kids are tasked with caring for an endangered animal prior to its release back into the wild. If you spend wisely, you can make sure your critter gets the love and care it needs to make a successful entry back into its habitat. The conservation-minded budgeting theme teaches dual lessons in a fun format.
Motion Math: Cupcake! — If you have a future entrepreneur in the house, consider this one. This game allows kids to operate their own cupcake business. They make purchasing decisions for the raw ingredients and then set prices for the finished product. Great training on business budgeting and pricing for the market!
Celebrity Calamity — This one puts your kids in the role of a financial advisor for celebrities that are on an out-of-control spending binge. It’s their job to rein in the celebrity’s spending habits, while keeping them happy at the same time. It’s great training on the art of compromise, while showing the very real dangers of living beyond your means.
Especially with younger kids who were born into the smartphone age, these apps are great tools to keep your kids busy learning money skills they’ll need when they grow up. Most are free, and they provide an easy way for kids to learn before they get old enough to make some real world money blunders!