When I was a kid our parents taught us about saving money with a piggy bank. Dropping those coins in the slot, and an occasional dollar was a concrete way we could see how not frivolously buying candy or trinkets with our money could make it grow… so we could get something we really wanted (which was probably also frivolous, but way cooler… lol). Things are different today though. Money is more often something you never actually hold in your hand. It is a blip of data transferred via a plastic card, email or automatic deposit. Many adults struggle with wrapping their heads around the current realities of finances, so doesn’t it make sense to give kids the best head start you can in this essential part of life.
To help kids get on the right foot with the basics of finances, PNC Bank has teamed with Sesame Street in creating the “S’ is for Savings” program. The program is geared toward preschool age children, but is appropriate for kids up to about age 8. It marries a savings account with interactive online educational games and a multi-media kit which includes a dvd featuring Sesame Street characters, a fun activity book and a parent’s guide.
The online game takes children through the process of earning money, then dividing what they earned into saving, sharing and spending jars, each of which has it’s own game as well. Presenting these concepts in the form of an interactive web game is a great way to get kids interested in these concepts at an early age. Using a DVD and activity book in conjunction with the game, helps children generalize the concepts, so they become more than just what happens in the game. Kids will “get” what is really going on.
Not only do children have access to these games, and resources, but PNC even offers specialized “S is for Savings” bank accounts, built just for kids, that incorporate the concepts they are learning through the other materials. As you can see below their favorite Sesame Street characters are there to help them through the process. The screens can even be personalized with your child’s name and special birthday surprise! The whole program is well designed and integrated, to appeal to and educate kids in this age group. It is easy to see that Early Education experts played a huge part in it’s development.
To make participation in the program accessible to families and get children on the right financial path, PNC has made setting kids up with their own “S is for Savings” bank account both easy and inexpensive. An account can be started with just a minimum starting balance of $25, and no service charges for patrons under the age of 18 (interest starts accruing at just a $1 balance). Parents can set up small allowance deposits from their own accounts using PNC’s “auto save” feature.
PNC will be distributing 1 million of these new kits, and bilingual materials will be available at their branches, pncgrowupgreat.com, and sesamestreet.org/save. To set up an ‘S’ is for Savings account for your child, visit any PNC branch, contact their call center, or sign-up right online at http://pnc.com/SisforSavings.
Sponsored post. All opinions and experiences presented here are my own.