Education – Knowledge is the new Money

The Australian education system is where it all starts and unfortunately for all of us it fails to start well. I’m not talking about your grades in chemistry or physics – I’m talking about what we DON’T learn in school, that’s the real problem!

For 13 years we go to school and are taught everyday things that most of us will probably never end up using in the ‘real world’. When was the last time you used that physics equation or that lovely concept of algebra in your day to day life ?

Yet we are drilled with these subjects day in and day out for years and years…. Why ?

Because the current system was designed and conceived for a different generation – it goes back to the industrial revolution when school systems were created to prepare us to work hard, go to college, get a good job and retire comfortably. Kids don’t believe that these days. That is the ‘old school’ way of thought, but we are still being educated based on that life story. It is about standardisation and conformity, just like a factory production line mentality.

One of my mentors has an interesting saying about how we generally turn out after school- “The A grade students usually end up working for the C grade students, and the B grade students usually end up working for the government!”
I went to my 10 year school reunion and out of curiosity wanted to see if there was any correlation with this statement, and it blew me away how accurate it was!

When you were growing up at home, how was the subject of money dealt with by your parents? Was it spoken about freely at the dinner table, or were you like most of us where the subject was taboo and not to be talked about. Did you ever know how much your parents earned?

Your parents may never have sat you down to teach you about money, but I’m sure you would’ve learned a lot by watching them and their money habits over the years. In your formative years, you absorbed money management habits primarily from your parents and TV. Whatever it was that your parents did financially, you either modelled yourself to their habits and followed suit or you did the exact opposite and rebelled against
their money management techniques!

Children usually learn best by actually ‘doing’ rather than just listening. Especially when it comes to moulding your child’s money management skills, it is important to get them to learn the value of a dollar through associated chores/work around the house. This teaches them valuable lessons such as: Work and get paid, saving, budgeting and compound interest. A great concept to implement with your kids, is to pay them a fee for the work that they complete around the house (cleaning the dishes, taking out the rubbish etc). This rewards them for their efforts and enables them to learn firsthand how to handle and manage money. When you go to pay them, always do it in 2 payments. The cash portion which you give to them on the spot will carry a huge weight for them psychologically. The other split portion of the payment you could have those funds electronically wired (saved) into a bank account to sit in a term deposit for your child to watch grow over the years. School will not teach your kids these habits so put them ahead of their peers by starting to teach them early and put them in good stead for the future.

Scott Parry

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