Have you ever thought about the type of things that you wish your parents had taught you about money? I know I certainly have. For some households, the topic of personal finance was something that was seldom talked about; some parents even considered it rude to ask questions about money. This may have worked for the adults in the situation, but it meant that an entire generation of kids grew up either not understanding how certain finance products worked or having only a very limited grasp on them.
As a millennial and a parent, I had to teach myself about mortgages, money management and financial products, such as loans and investments. Now that my children are starting to learn more about money, I want to ensure that they have a great start to their adult lives and are fully versed in how to financial world works.
So how do I plan to teach my children about money management and finance? Through games, of course!
When it comes to teaching children, the best way to get any message through to them is to ensure that it’s interesting and interactive. Allowing children to actually get involved and use their hands is a great way to reinforce any kind of learning. Teaching children about financial products such as mortgages and taxes through the use of games is a gentle and informative way to teach them the vital information that they need in order to become financially stable and knowledgeable adults.
Where can you find games about money management?
I know it sounds like a very niche subject, but you’ll be amazed by the number of free games about money management that are available on the mortgagecalculator.org website. Despite being a resource full of fantastic interactive and educational games that help to teach children about money management, mortgages, business, and entrepreneurship, the Mortgage Calculator website refuses to use adverts to monetise their games.
This means that the money management educational games available through the Mortgage Calculator website are 100% free to play, as well as completely ad-free. It would therefore be absolutely crazy not to use this fantastic resource as a way to help educate my kids about finances and money management.
Our favourite free money management and finance games on the Mortgage Calculator website.
Mortgagecalculator.org has tonnes of fantastic games that are free to play for kids and teenagers. There are plenty of categories to choose from depending on the financial theme you wish to teach your children more about, including money games, real estate games, food business simulation games, business simulation games and many more. These game topics cover many of the financial basics, as well as allowing kids to learn more about certain industries that they could well find themselves working in as adults.
Having played and explored nearly every game on the website, we have chosen a few of our favourites to share with you.
Cash Back is a really simple game but it teaches a vital life skill that is essential for almost any job in retail. With varying difficulty levels, this game challenges kids to produce the correct amount of change for a purchase. The easy level deals with rounded numbers, such as $5, $8, and $10, whereas the higher levels of difficulty present customers who are paying amounts such as $6.75, $10.24 and so on. You can opt-in to have the customer tell you the amount of change that is needed – this makes it a lot easier, but it’s still a challenge thanks to the time limit you have for each game you play. Although this game isn’t directly about mortgages or money management, I do think it’s a great game for children to play as it’s definitely something that will come in handy as they age.
LEGO City Adventures Build And Protect
This game is simply addictive! LEGO City Build and Protect teaches kids how to build a thriving metropolis using tax revenue from commercial and state buildings. This game is really fun and the concept is simple enough for smaller children to understand. The aim is to build your neighbourhood by digging up LEGO blocks and earning enough tax revenue to create new buildings. In turn, these buildings then produce tax and you are able to steadily expand your town into a thriving city. Each type of building gives you a different tax amount, so be sure to save up your LEGO bricks to enable you to build as many of the big tax buildings as possible!
Real Estate Tycoon
This simulation game is based on the notion of purchasing property for a low value and trying to make the most profit possible when selling it. It’s a fast paced game that starts with the player having to click on properties such as houses as they pop up on the map. The idea is that you click on the property as soon as possible in order to purchase it for a low price; you then watch the house prices rise and fall and click again to sell. Each level has a target amount of profit for you to make before moving on to the next level. As you continue to play the game, higher valued properties will appear on the map. These are more expensive to buy and the prices rise and fall on these very quickly, however, if you manage to sell them at the right time, you can make a great profit.
This is only one way to help your children to understand more about money management.
Playing games is a brilliant way to help children to understand money better, however, there’s only so much that a game can do. The rest of it falls to you. You must be prepared to have difficult discussions, present yourself as a good role model, and be around to teach them the basics of how to become financially savvy as they journey into adulthood.
If you’ve any tips for helping children to better understand money and finances, I would love to hear them so please feel free to leave a comment!