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Setting Kids Up For Financial Success - Interview #10 With Fiscal Kids


Fiscal success for children with Fiscal Kids

Jeff: This month I sat down with Karmel Leor Greenfeld from Fiscal Kids. Karmel strongly believes that empowering children with financial literacy tools is critical to their financial wellness as adults. I agree! Welcome, Karmel. Can you provide me with a brief overview of what Fiscal Kids is all about?

Karmel: Fiscal Kids is a curriculum created to make sure that all children leave high school with the tools necessary to powerfully manage their financial well-being in life. Fiscal Kids provides them with the information required to stay out of debt, spend money on needs instead of wants, save, and invest for their future. It reshapes how people view the flow of money and explains to kids that they can be successful no matter what job they choose to do in the future.

 

 Jeff: What inspired you to create this business?

 Karmel: After spending years as a financial news producer in New York City, then working as a start-up business development executive during the dot com boom, and then business coaching for two decades, I became aware that most of the adult population has no idea how to successfully structure their financial lives.  No matter how educated people were, be they surgeons, chiropractors, teachers, or business executives, nobody understood the concept of creating passive income for themselves. It occurred to me that these lessons need to be taught in school, from a very young age. I got frustrated seeing that the only way to learn about saving and investing, good debt and bad debt, was through trial and error.

 

Jeff: Sounds intriguing. Who are the programs designed for exactly?

Karmel: The programs are for anyone who wishes to expand their understanding of how life works after school ends. Whether in a classroom or a private home, the games inspire children to save and invest in their future. I liken these programs to learning to brush your teeth, they are that fundamental.

  

Jeff: How did you come up with the various topics for each grade level?

Karmel: In grades 1 through 4, I turn the classroom into a micro-economy. The students start the class by setting up a big goal or dream they have that they would like to achieve one day, a trip to Disneyland for example. Then they are all assigned a job, with the risk that if they don’t do a good job they could be fired. Each job has a different salary associated with it. Once they complete their job, they go to the bank and receive their pay, but then move along to the accountant to pay their expenses. After that, they contribute some of their hard-earned cash to charity. From what remains, they can either buy candy from the shop or save towards their pre-set goal. For grades 5 and up, we do vision boarding to start the course, and then proceed to play a board game that teaches the students how to accrue passive income in life.

 

The classroom workshops are three hours long for grades 1-3, and the full school day for the remaining grades. Teachers are not required to receive approval from their school board to host a session in their classroom. I believe it is now a federal requirement to teach financial literacy in schools, so this is something to make the teachers’ lives easier. In-home family workshops require three hours.

 

Jeff: Who did you work with to create the content? For example, teachers, parents, financial planners, entrepreneurs?

Karmel: I used ideas I had picked up along my life path around the globe to create the curriculum.

 

Jeff: Your video said that you make the classes fun for the kids. Can you give an example of how you do this?

Karmel: At the beginning of each class, I explain to the students that I am not a teacher and that I have only come to play games with them. When I ask them if that is ok with them, they usually have little smiles and their eyes gleam as if we are going to be naughty. They always look a bit confused but inevitably, at the end of the games, beg for me to stay longer and when I say I am not able to, they request that I please come back soon. After that, I usually receive a few hugs with immense gratitude.

 

Jeff: How has your program been received by teachers? Are they able to customize a session for their requirements?

Karmel: The Fiscal Kids program is a set schedule with specific basic lessons.  As you will see in our testimonials, the teachers and parents have been raving about the program. One teacher, a former banker, said she has never seen any program like this before as we incorporate emotional intelligence, financial literacy, math, and fun engagingly such that the children are not even aware they are learning.  She was amazed at how even the most introverted, shy students fully participated.

 

When the students are asked what they will remember from the games, here are some of their answers:

 

“I learned that it is important to save my money so that I can create passive income for myself when I see a good investment opportunity.” Grade 7 student

 

“I learned that investing isn’t scary if you have information.” Grade 6 student

 

“I feel smarter.” Grade 3 student

 

All the kids leave the Fiscal Kids courses feeling empowered and excited about their futures, instead of stressed and afraid.  As everyone is saying, this program is a game-changer for their lives.

 

Jeff: How does a client order your services? Do they choose the appropriate grade first, then choose the type of program?

Karmel: To request a workshop, people visit the website: www.fiscal-kids.com or call us at: 604.355.4949.  You can also email us at: book@fiscal-kids.com.

 

Jeff: Karmel, thank you for your time. Your passion for financial literacy for children is inspiring and I wish you much success with your business. Karmel: Thank you for allowing me to share my new venture, Jeff!

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