The summer months mean many kids in America are working for some extra cash in their pocket. Whether he or she is doing odd jobs around the house or working at the local pool, it’s the perfect time to teach your child financial lessons that will last a lifetime.

“It’s never too early to begin teaching children the basics of finance,” said Shelby Reno, senior vice president and marketing director for Independent Bank. “We encourage parents to expose their children to experiences like visiting the bank, budgeting and paying bills.”

Independent Bank offers examples of teachable moments to help you get started:

  • At the bank. When you go to the bank, bring your children with you and show them how transactions work. Get the manager to explain how the bank operates, how money generates interest and how an ATM works.
  • On payday. Discuss how your pay is budgeted to pay for housing, food and clothing, and how a portion is saved for future expenses such as college tuition and retirement.
  • At the grocery store. Explain the benefits of comparison shopping, coupons and store brands.
  • Paying bills. Explain the many ways that bills can be paid: over the phone, paper or by check, electronic check or online check draft. Discuss how each method of bill pay takes money out of your account. Be sure to cover late penalties, emphasizing the importance of paying bills on time.
  • Using credit cards. Explain that credit cards are a loan and need to be repaid. Share how each month a credit card statement comes in the mail with a bill. Go over the features of different types of cards, such as ATM, debit and credit cards.

Independent Bank is committed to financial literacy education in the communities it serves and seeks opportunities to educate people across the state about finances. Associates reach out to community members by presenting nationally created programs, such as the ABA’s Teach Children to Save and Get Smart About Credit, and through customized presentations developed locally to meet the needs of any group interested in financial literacy.

Bank associates set out to educate young people, reaching students as young as kindergarten, with the hope that they will go into adulthood with a solid financial knowledge-base. Through community outreach, the bank seeks to help adults of all ages understand that it is never too late to gain control of finances and to understand money management principles. Associates are available to present on topics such as fraud and identity theft protection, understanding the cost of living, responsible use of credit, preparing for home ownership and more.

Interested groups are encouraged to contact their local Independent Bank office about financial literacy education. A complete list of locations can be found online at IndependentBank.com.