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Expert: Teach children about finances now not later

During the recession, Arizona became known as one of the least financial literate states in the country. Last year, it became one of 17 states that requires financial literacy courses in high school, but is that enough?

Financial expert and planner, Laurie Bagley said, “That’s too late.” She said its all about the digital age in which we live.

“We pay our bills online and the children really aren’t seeing the active management part of money management.”

Bagley made it clear that financial awareness starts at home.

“A big aspect of financial education is parental modeling; our children mimic what they see.”

Bagley believes financial literacy can be taught at any age. She began teaching her own children at ages 3 and 4 through simple, daily activities,

“Even a simple activity like taking them to the grocery store and explaining the different cost of things.”

Children need to “learn to earn,” according to Bagley. By having children work and save up for the latest iPod, parents begin to install a sense of work ethic in their children.

“It’s all about the education.”

With her own children, she found that setting a goal was the best way to help her spenders save.

Bagley teaches financial literacy in schools around the state and privately to families.