Financial Decision Making Using Your Strengths
Life Skills and Financial Literacy
Lesson 1: Signature Strengths
Students are reminded of something called ‘Signature Strengths.’ These are skills we are born with to help us navigate through life: Our ability to make choices; our ability to learn. Intuition, etc. These are skills we often forget when facing financial decisions and challenges. These learnings are a fundamental part of the Winning Play$ program that will help students identify techniques and strategies to move beyond the challenges we discuss.
Lesson 2: Social Messages – Gender
Students explore how gender plays out in their financial experience. They will discover how men and women have different financial beliefs and behaviors, and how the world treats them differently when it comes to money. This awareness is vital because these experiences shape our beliefs about ourselves and our choices. In addition, students will identify strategies to stand-up to internal and external pressures to conform to gender stereotypes. And they will see how important it is to be empowered with information. They also develop strategies and techniques for having healthy conversations about money with the opposite sex.
Lesson 3: Social Messages – Keeping Up
Students explore how race and ethnicity play out in their financial lives. There are different stereotypes associated with different racial and ethnic groups. Some are perceived to be overly frugal. Some are perceived to be financially savvy. Some are perceived to be financially illiterate. Students will see how these ‘labels’ affect how they are treated by society, lenders, and other financial institutions. We also examine why we often fit our stereotypes, and identify ‘Signature Strengths’ and strategies to help them get past limiting beliefs they may hold because of their race or ethnicity.
Lesson 4: Social Messages – Childhood Messages
The ways in which we see our parents or primary caregivers relate to money has a tremendous impact on our own beliefs and behaviors. In this lesson, students explore how these ‘childhood money scripts’ are affecting their financial experiences. Young people who grow up in homes where there are not healthy conversations about money tend to have poor communication skills about financial issues. Family patterns about debt, saving, spending, and honoring financial commitments also leave a mark on behavior. In addition to looking at ‘childhood money scripts’ students will create a profile of their financial attitudes and behaviors about things like saving, investing, and debt.
- Financial journalist and expert for PBS Newshour Weekend, Today Show, Huffington Post, CNN, CNNI, CBS, and Headline New.
- Author of The True Cost of Happiness: The Real Story Behind Managing Your Money. Writer, Dow Jones & Co., Wall Street Journal Television.
- Winner, U.S Department of Ed Excellence in Financial Education award.
- Advisory Committee Member for the Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair for Media, Culture, and Feminist studies at Rutgers University