Sunday, February 22, 2009
I took the kids to the new hands on museum Moneyville exhibit yesterday.
And it was AWESOME!!!
This is a traveling exhibit so check into your local science museum and see if it is coming your way.
There were so many fun and informative activities (for me, too!!) and they were all so relevant for the current financial times.
Like this one...
Behold the budget scale. The kids had to balance out the preset money bag with household living expenses. I was so impressed that both girls immediately put on housing, food, education, clothing... and both assessed that extras like eating out and vacations weren't worth it. It was kind of funny that when they had to balance the budget after adding toys that Kid wanted to keep toys and get rid of clothing and my 12 year old niece favored the opposite strategy. Kid is a nudist after all... and six.
The exhibit had several investment games... which could really make you feel like an idiot for not having started investing sooner... but also gave me some serious hope about how to focus our efforts and a determination to give our kids a head start as soon as we're able. Nothing like seeing that investing $1000 a year for 10 years and then letting it ride for the next 40 could earn you $1,800,000.00. The sooner the better people.
For the teen in your crowd they had a fun (and addictive) computer game that allows you to pick your career and lifestyle and then deal with all the unexpected expenses that come your way. It was an eye opener to my niece that no matter what she tried to do she was immediately out of cash and having to charge these expenses. (this game is heavily swayed toward causing debt... but it made a good point). You can play it online HERE. Good God now that I've found it online I've been playing it all morning. What I like about it is that it isn't just about meeting your character's financial goals... it's the whole picture... you have to meet their life goals too... and it quickly becomes difficult to balance them both. Just like in real life.
I can't stress enough how fantastic this exhibit is. There were things for older and younger kids... but it was something even a teenager could get a lot out of (hell, I got a lot out of it). We might even go back today so Mr F can see it.