Raising All Kids To Be Money Smart – An out of the box solution for special needs

Raising money smart kids is something many parents strive for. We want our children to be confident, decisive and able to navigate the financial world responsibly. When a parent or teacher is working with children with disabilities, that pressure is increased significantly. We want to find ways to educate these children so they can empower and protect themselves as adults. We want to raise money smart adults, but it starts with raising money smart kids.

Child with cash in hand learning about budgeting and how to be money smart from CIBC Magnus Cards

Disclosure: I have partnered with YMC and CIBC and have received compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

All Children Can Learn – But it doesn’t stop the worry

Our guiding value and mission at STEAM Powered Family is that all children can learn, we simply need to teach the way they learn. As a mother of two children with special needs I feel it is vital to educate all children so they can be protected and functional in society as adults. Yet, that doesn’t stop me worrying about today, and especially the future.

Raising Money Smart Kids 

One of the biggest struggles I face is how to teach my children to be money smart. Gone are the days of simply learning how to count money and using cash at the corner store. Today I need to also teach my children how to use debit cards, credit cards, loans, lines of credit, investments, foreign currencies, savings, mortgages… and as outdated as it may seem, they also need to learn how to write a cheque.

It’s mind boggling for me. The idea of teaching all of this to my children, especially my youngest son who struggles with significant cognitive disabilities and learning delays.

Future Worries – A Drive To Protect My Child

It crosses my mind almost everyday, often at 4 in the morning, when those big worries really haunt us parents. How will he do when I’m not here to help him? How is he going to function in society and during day-to-day tasks? What about those big scary things, like when a scammer calls, but what they say sounds like it could be real?

As a parent of a child with special needs, who is also the sweetest, most trusting and loving person you could ever meet, I worry so much about his future.

Especially when it comes to money and all the fraud and scams that have taken in so many people. I don’t want that to be my son!

Tablet with CIBC Magnus Card Deck displayed with money counted and sorted around it.

CIBC MagnusCards – Making Banking and Money Easier

One of the ways I am trying to overcome that worry is by actively teaching my son now, at 9 years old, skills he will need as an adult. That is why I was so excited to hear about the new CIBC Decks on the MagnusCards app. I’ve been struggling with teaching my son money management and banking, but with this tool I’ve discovered a fantastic solution that will arm my son with the banking skills and financial literacy he is going to need for the rest of his life.

MagnusCards is a free app that teaches life-skills through storytelling. We refer to this as social stories and have used social stories since my son was very young, but MagnusCards takes it to a whole new level of awesome. In the app they call them card decks and you can pick and chose the ones that are right for you.

CIBC has partnered with MagnusCards to help make banking easier for people with special needs.

Kids with money and a tablet learning with CIBC Magnus Cards Deck how to be money smart

There are 21 digital card decks from CIBC in the app that teach everything from making a purchase with cash at the store, to using an ATM, to budgeting. They are all free. I’ve already downloaded a number of card decks and have started going through them with my son.

We normally sit down and do them together, but my son can also use the app independently. If he struggles with reading the words, the app will read the content to him.

Once he has gone through the card deck a few times, we practice the skills at home with pretend play. Once he is confident, it is time take his skills out into the real world!

With a little time, practice, and working with the MagnusCards card decks from CIBC, I’m feeling much more confident about teaching my children how to be money smart.

CIBC is proud to support the MagnusCards app – a tool that helps people with special needs live more independently.

Download the FREE MagnusCards app from the Play store or the App store and start educating, empowering and protecting your kids today, so they can become confident, money smart, adults.

I have come to realize that I may never stop worrying about my children. But maybe, with a little effort and time, one day my son will be teaching me how to use some fancy new payment method or teaching me how to navigate the latest money management programs.

I know my son can learn, he has proven it over and over again. He just doesn’t fit into the traditional, education boxes. It’s up to me to figure out how he learns so he can be money smart. I love that MagnusCards and CIBC have partnered to create an exceptional, out of the box tool, that fits my life and helps me teach my out of the box kid.

Child with tablet studying money management and financial literacy skills with CIBC Magnus Cards