Should We Teach Financial Literacy In High Schools?

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Posted in Money Tips
Posted by J. Douglas Hoyes, CA, CPA, LIT, CIRP, CBV

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It’s Financial Literacy Month here in Canada and to kick it off I’ve invited retired math teacher of 30 years, educational speaker and publisher, Dave Mitchell to the show to talk about whether we should be teaching financial literacy in the high school classroom. Dave and I go back and forth about whether teaching financial skills to students who won’t use it for many years is productive, or whether we need to focus on teaching skepticism instead.

The Education Goal Is About Planting Seeds

I ask Dave whether there is a point to teaching things like RRSPs, RESPs and investing to high school students who will most likely forget the information once they leave high school. Dave explains that although we don’t always remember the exact formula or details of a lesson, having a basic understanding that it exists, is enough. He points that

I think what you’re doing, Doug, is planting a seed. And if you introduce students to this and you spend a little bit of time, you discuss it, you look at it, analyze it and you give them a sense of confidence that they actually have a grip on it, then later in life, they may not remember specifically how to do those calculations in detail, but as you well know with things like YouTube…I think you can really fly with some of these things.

Dave’s point is that if you give students the confidence to understand a concept, they can reference things like the internet later in life to remember how to do it, and therefore, you’ve planted a seed that has lasting effects. In his experience, Dave asserts that

I’ve just seen too many lights come on over the the time that I was teaching in the classroom and students saying thank you for showing me this because I have an understanding now.

Students Should Learn To Be Skeptical

My personal opinion is that the most important thing that we can teach students in high school is to think critically and to be skeptical. If students have the ability to ask questions, do their research and avoid taking information at face value, those skills will help them in their financial future.

Dave agrees with me that it’s important for students to check facts and ask questions and tells me about one student who went with his parents to purchase their car. In the classroom they had learned how to calculate car payments and when the salesman told his parents how much the car would cost each month, the student decided to run the numbers for himself. It turns out that the salesman’s calculations were off and the student ended up saving his parents $15 a month over the course of their payment term.

Dave explains that because the student learned how to do the calculations in school and he was able to think critically about the information being given, “he knew how to figure it out [and] that knowledge was power to him”.

Are We Doing Enough?

We established that teaching students to think critically and to be skeptical in the real world are important skills to learn. But are we doing enough?

Dave points out that

…it would be important for people involved in education to have, to continue to have, a good overview and a look at what’s in the curriculum from time to time, and then saying, are we keeping up? Should we be adjusting? Should we be doing more? And my feeling is we could probably do even more.

I believe that teaching financial math is important. Learning how to calculate interest and understanding concepts like compound interest are necessary for figuring out loan payments and the kinds of debt that they students will inevitably take on as adults. That way, even if students forget how to calculate interest, they may remember why it’s important to do the calculations and can fill in the gaps using sites like YouTube or Khan Academy. Dave believes that giving students the confidence to learn financial concepts in school will allow them to use tutorials on these kinds of sites to teach themselves the calculations that they may forget and take responsibility for their own ongoing education, for the rest of their lives.

Listen to the full show for more information about:

  • How to calculate a loan payment.
  • What financial concepts are currently being taught in high schools.
  • Why financial literacy is important.

Read the full transcript with Dave Mitchell below.

Do you think we should be teaching financial literacy in high schools? Does it matter that students might forget how to do the math or is it most important that they simply understand that those concepts exist? Let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

Resources Mentioned in the Show:

FULL TRANSCRIPT show #62 with Dave Mitchell

financial-literacy-transcriptDoug Hoyes: Most of the time here on Debt Free in 30 I have guests on that I agree with. I may play devil’s advocate and ask questions that sound like I’m disagreeing with them, but most of the time I’m on the same page as my guests. Not today. Today my guest is a guy I’ve known for many years. He’s a really good guy, really smart but there is a topic we disagree on and that’s what we’re going to talk about today.

As many of you know, November is financial literacy month here in Canada and one of the topics that comes up every year is how should we teach financial literacy in schools? I think that’s the wrong question. I think a better question is there any point in teaching financial literacy in schools? I have two teenage sons; both of them are in high school. And I was once a teenager in high school myself, so I have a vague understanding of what it’s like to be a teenager. If you’re a teenager in high school, you most likely don’t have a full-time job, you don’t have much money and you don’t have access to credit. So, is there really any point in teaching a high school student about RRSPs and RESPs and investing?

I’m not convinced that teaching those concepts to someone who may or may not use them for ten years has much benefit. It’s like learning French, if you don’t use it, you lose it. How many of us took years and years of French in school, but can hardly speak a word of it today? Most of us I bet. And that’s my opinion on teaching financial literacy in schools.

I agree that as Canadians, our level of financial literacy is appallingly low. The facts speak for themselves. We’re carrying record levels of debt. I see an increasing number of people getting payday loans, which are almost always a horrible idea. There’s almost always a better option. And yet people get them. It may be desperation, but in a lot of cases it’s a lack of knowledge about how interest rates work. As a society we lack basic financial knowledge, so teaching it is a good idea.

I’m just not convinced that teaching it to high school students, who can’t apply it right away, is a useful exercise. But, maybe I’m wrong. I’m not a high school teacher, so let’s ask someone who actually understands the world of high school education. Let’s get started by welcoming my guest. Who are you and what’s your background?

Dave Mitchell: Hi Doug, good morning. My name is Dave Mitchell and I taught high school math here in Kitchener for 30 years at Grand River Collegiate and at Cameron Heights. And these days since retiring from the classroom in 2004, I speak at educational conferences in Canada and the United States sharing ideas with teachers on how to make math more engaging and interesting for students. I also am involved in educational publishing and I have a series of booklets, CD’s and DVD’s, all of which are based around that same theme of making the study of math more engaging for students.

Doug Hoyes: And obviously math has a lot to do with what we’re talking about today. And what I’m going to do is put in the show notes over at hoyes.com, links to all the stuff that you’re talking about so if people are interested in finding out more about what you’re talking about, the stuff that you’ve done, they can find it there.

So, let’s, before you and I get into a fist fight here, let’s start with the basics. What is being taught in schools today? And I understand that you can’t give me an overview of everything that’s taught all over North America. But, why don’t we concentrate on what is being taught in Ontario, which is probably comparable to other parts of the country with respect to financial literacy. What is in the curriculum now to the best of your knowledge?

Dave Mitchell: Well, historically, what happened was the students who were not in the upper academic stream, got most of the financial part of the curriculum presented to them, and the students who were in the straight academic math stream got very little of it, which seemed odd because students, as you know, are always asking the question why should we learn this? What value does it have? And actually the application of math in financial matters is one of the most common, everyday, hands on you can get a grip on it type of things you can imagine. And it’s a perfect response to students. Let’s take an in-depth look at this so you understand the nuts and bolts of financial math calculations, simple interest, compound interest, annuities. How are these things actually worked out? Where do they come from? How are the calculations done?

And my experience was that students loved and appreciated that aspect of mathematics, it was something concrete, something they could get a grab on. And years ago, when we had grade 13, and I’m going back now many years, within grade 13 there was a course called math of investment. And it was one of the best courses in all of high school math for hands on understanding of the way financial calculations are made. And the students who took that course loved it and many of them went on to be – to take studies relating to financial math, accounting and the like, that sort of thing. They were so intrigued by the calculations, the finance of math that they were motivated to go and do it. And sadly, that course got dropped from the curriculum. And I remember thinking to myself, what a mistake, what a mistake.

So, that’s what happened historically. Just checking with a friend of mine who’s a math department head here in town, a week or so ago in preparation for speaking with you today, I found that there is still math finance discussions in the basic math and applied math courses and there is some in the academic math. But probably it would be such that you could argue there’s room for a lot more.

Doug Hoyes: And so, if I’m a high school student, you’re talking about two different steams here, the basic stream and the advanced stream I think is what you’re calling them?

Dave Mitchell: Well, we sort of have a math for everyday life and the terminology changes from time to time. But it’s a math for everyday life, and then applied math, and then an academic math.

Doug Hoyes: So, there’s kind of three different categories to it.

Dave Mitchell: Right.

Doug Hoyes: And so math for everyday life, what are we talking about?

Dave Mitchell: I’m sure there it would be calculations that are fairly straightforward and every day, like how does simple interest work? And there’s an uncomplicated or simple formula for simple interest as you know. And the students would also look at compound interest. And with calculators being the way they are now, it’s fairly straightforward to show a student how to do those calculations.

So, you could say if I’m investing so much money for such a length of time at 10% per annum compounded semi-annually, how much do I end up with? They would also look probably at payments, car payments and the like. And I would think more likely they would work from tables. I’m not sure on that one but I think they would work from tables. Say in the math for everyday life to figure out a rough idea of what a mortgage payment would be or a car payment would be. It wouldn’t be too intricate a mathematical look at it, but it would be enough to get a sense of what these things would turn out to be.

Doug Hoyes: And is that something every student in high school would get or just people in a certain steam?

Dave Mitchell: Well, once again, my understanding there is that certainly in math for everyday life there would be a look at it at a very fundamental and everyday level; in the applied math I believe that’s the case. And in the academic math I think there is a look at it and probably in some cases a more advanced look at it. I know my friend who is the math department head also teaches IB math, The International Baccalaureate Math, and he said there they have quite an in-depth look at the mathematics of the financial calculations for annuities and the likes. So, there they would really be getting into some sophisticated math and they have at least a discussion for, I would imagine, several weeks on how these things work.

Doug Hoyes: So, there is some stuff being taught today. There might not be a huge amount of consistency. It may depend on what program, what courses you’re taking. So, let’s get back to my basic point which is well isn’t that all really kind of a waste of time. So, simple interest, okay I get that. I think that’s a concept you can teach someone and they will remember ’cause it’s not that hard, it’s simple that’s why it’s called simple interest. But what about the more complicated things? When you try to apply those to real life if it’s something I’m not going to be using for years and years and years, is there really any point teaching that?

Dave Mitchell: I think what you’re doing Doug is planting a seed. And if you introduce student to this and you spend a little bit of time, you discuss it, you look at it, you analyze it and you give them a sense of confidence that they actually have a grip on it. Then later in life, they may not remember specifically how to do those calculations in detail, but as you well know with things like YouTube, you can simply search for a tutorial on “calculation of compound interest” for example. And somebody there would present a tutorial that would be a good discussion of how these discussions are made. And if the seed had been planted and now you’ve got the refresher at your fingertips through YouTube I think you can fly with some of these things.

Doug Hoyes: So, do you need to plant the seed? ‘Cause I totally agree with what you’re saying about modern technology and I know, one of my sons in particular, learns all sorts of stuff on YouTube. He’s a visual learner, that’s how he does it and he tells me all sorts of stuff. He’s way over my head, I have no clue what he’s talking about. So, maybe that’s the answer. What we really need in all areas of life is a just in time learning system. So, okay I’m now old enough that I can go out and buy a car, finance a car, well maybe now’s the time then that I go on YouTube, find some videos, learn it and be ready to go. Does it really matter what I learned in high school ten years earlier?

Dave Mitchell: Well, life goes by so quickly. And you can easily miss the boat on something. And let me give you a concrete example. A friend of mine, a fellow who grew up with me here in town, who has had his working career in New York City, after he had established his career and was working for a number of years, he learned by chance that there was an opportunity to put away money from his paycheque on a regular basis into a deferred compensation fund.

And over the years that he was contributing to this, this grew to oh a sum of about $400,000 that he will be able to enjoy and use throughout his retirement. And he said the only way he even knew of the power of this, and the power of say something like compound interest, was not because he had studied it in school. He regretted that he had never even learned about it when he was in high school, but he learned from a friend. Then when he started to investigate what went on when you have compound interest working in your favour, he was astounded and he started telling his friends. And some of them, even though they had only say ten years to go in their working career, started to put money aside and were absolutely amazed at what it produced. And they had the regret that they didn’t know earlier that this was available and the power that it had.

Doug Hoyes: But if he had learned it earlier, would it have made an impression on him? I guess we don’t know the answer to that.

Dave Mitchell: No, we don’t know. But he’s the type where that seed could have made a huge difference for him. And he told me, had I known about this at the beginning of my working career, he said I would have been able to grow that fund into a million dollars rather than $400,000.

So, once again, there are lots of things that one might study in school at any level and you have a hard time connecting A to B. You know, I learned A and therefore I can do B and it helps me accomplish C in my life. However, learning – I think all learning is of value and some of these things that are practical that students seem to be clamouring for, I think that’s a real key to sort of grab hold of them and say look there’s more to this math than just figuring out how to solve a quadratic equation or to solve a geometric series or to understand a geometric series you can start applying it and then look what this can mean over the course of your life. It can make a huge difference.

Doug Hoyes: So, the gist of your argument is, education in whatever form it is, maybe isn’t the end goal, it plants a seed and that seed leads to something else, which leads to something else, which leads to something else, and therefore, you can’t draw a linear relationship to it. So, if we were teaching more of this stuff in high schools, elementary schools, whatever, then at least by the time we got to later life, the light bulb might come on and we might go yeah I have some vague recollection of something like that. And therefore, it does have value. So, I’m taking a much too simplistic view of it is what you’re saying.

Dave Mitchell: Well, I think so. If you start with simple bank accounts and deposits versus withdrawals for young students and how to write cheques, even though cheques are going out of fashion, but you can have quite a discussion even with very young kids about budgeting and that sort of thing and start it off. And then I think by high school age it is appropriate to know the basics of these things that we’ve discussed and at the level at which the student can understand and deal with mathematical concepts, the complexity of what you look at could increase.

And I’ve just seen too many lights come on over the time that I was teaching in the classroom and students saying thank you for showing me this because I have an understanding now.

And I had an example of a grade 13 student, once again this is ancient history, but here’s what happened: we had looked at how to calculate mathematically the amount that a car payment should come out to each month, you know, given all the parameters. So, this student went along with his mom and dad when they were looking at purchasing a car. And the salesperson said okay here are the conditions and your monthly payment should work out to $250 a week and this was a while back. So, the student hauled out pencil, paper, had the calculator and went through the calculation and said no it should be $15 less a month. And the person, who was the salesperson, said no, no, no I’ve checked in the table here and my calculation is correct. So, the student was firm about this and the fellow went back to his tables and said I’ve made a mistake, you’re correct. So, the student came in the next day and was so happy to report that he had saved his parents $15 a month over the course of the payment schedule for this car. And he knew, he knew how to figure it out, that knowledge was power for him.

Doug Hoyes: And it was something that was applied really quickly. So, well okay let me throw a different concept at you, then. I agree that understanding how to do the math is important. And understanding, you know, the difference between simple interest, compound interest and those are mathematical concepts. But I think what’s even more important is the ability to think. And I think the illustration that you gave, just illustrated that. The student was sitting there and he was skeptical. He didn’t say oh well this salesman knows what he’s talking about so I’m going to just keep my mouth shut, he must be right. The student in fact said the exact opposite. Well, let me double check.

And so, I think if I was designing a financial literacy program in school, yes I’d want to teach them math, but even more importantly I would want to teach skepticism. And I don’t know if that’s the word for it or not but not taking things at face value. When I’m looking at a proposal from a salesman on a loan, I should have the wherewithal to ask questions, question assumptions and whatnot. Am I right on that?

Dave Mitchell: I would certainly agree. And in general, I would hope that education produces a healthy amount of skepticism in the sense that one does not take something without thinking it through and perhaps checking facts. And with the availability of the internet, now checking facts and figures, that’s so much more readily available than it was years ago. But yes, no you’re certainly correct on that. I would argue that’s part of it.

Now I have a very interesting anecdote too about a personal situation that happened years and years and years ago when – my wife and I have three children and they were all very young. We had somebody selling insurance come to the door, knocked on the door. And I ended up having about a three hour discussion with this person and the family allowance cheque, he had a plan. Take this family allowance cheque and deposit, it was either all or some of it, every month and here’s how much money you would have by the time your student reached age 17, 18 to go to post-secondary school.

And I looked at the calculations and they weren’t making sense to me. So, I did what my student had done, hauled out the calculator, took a pencil and paper, made the calculation and he was incorrect. He was incorrect. And he said, no, no, no I’m correct. Here are my tables, it says right here, this is what the result is. And I said, no you’re interpreting your tables incorrectly. And I showed him why he was interpreting the tables incorrectly. He was inadvertently adding an extra year to the calculation. Just the way the tables were set up, it wasn’t fraudulent, he was just mistaken. And when I showed him the mathematics of why it worked, he was amazed. And this was a young person at the beginning of his career and I said have you not studied this aspect of financial calculations? He said no.

So, I spent the next two hours volunteering to teach him. I didn’t have to do it. I just wanted to do it. And he thanked me when he left the door. I didn’t end up taking him up on his offer, but I felt kind of good because I thought well, for the rest of his career; at least he will be interpreting his tables correctly because he knows the math behind it.

Doug Hoyes: And that’s pretty important. Well, so just to conclude then what you’re saying then is, yes this is important and even though it may not flow all the way through life, specifically in that format, you’re planting a seed at the educational level and if that also leads to a healthy skepticism that’s a good thing. And that’s really what we need in our school system.

Dave Mitchell: Yes, I would agree with that and I would also think that it would be important for people involved in education to have, to continue to have, a good overview and a look at what’s in the curriculum from time to time. And then saying are we keeping up? Should we be adjusting? Should we be doing more? And my feeling is we could probably do even more.

Doug Hoyes: There’s always more than can be done ’cause the world does change very quickly. That’s an excellent note to wrap up the segment. Dave, thanks very much for being here.

Dave Mitchell: You’re welcome Doug, thank you.

Doug Hoyes: Thank you. I’ll be back with the next segment right here on Debt Free in 30.

Doug Hoyes:   It’s time for the Let’s Get Started segment here on Debt Free in 30. Every expert agrees that the level of financial knowledge in Canada could be better. That’s obvious from the massive level of debt that we carry, both as a country and as individual Canadians. I suspect that every one of us, myself included, has made bad financial decisions and often the cause of those bad decisions is a lack of financial knowledge. So, perhaps teaching financial concepts is a good idea.

So, what’s my opinion on how we should teach financial literacy in high school? As I said at the start of the show, I don’t see a lot of point in talking about retirement savings with a high school student. However, I do think there are two areas where high schools should devote some time to educating students. First, financial math. Understanding interest and compound interest is critical if you want to have any hope in later life of understanding how much interest you’re going to pay on that loan you want to get to buy a car or a house. So, I’ve asked Dave Mitchell to come back. And Dave, I’d like you to give us a quick illustration of how you can do a really rough estimate of what I should be paying on the loan. So, let’s assume I’m sitting there at the car dealership. It’s a used car, it’s $10,000 and the salesman tells me it’s going to be a loan, 10% interest, I’m going to pay it off over five years. Now I can’t do that amortization schedule in my head, but I’d like to get at least close to know ballpark wise what it’s going to be. So, walk me through how you would kind of think that through?

Dave Mitchell: Right, well we try to come up with a benchmark and then work from there. So, if we have $10,000 a year. Sorry –

Doug Hoyes: $10,000 in total is the loan.

Dave Mitchell: Yeah, $10,000 in total is the loan. And we’re paying that off over five years then our principle is $2,000 a year. So, the 10,000 divided by five gives us 2,000 a year. So, if we want to calculate a monthly figure, divide that 2,000 by 12 and we get about $167 a month, just in the principal.

Doug Hoyes: And that makes sense, okay 10,000 divided over five years. I mean really you’re taking 10,000 divided by 60 okay $167 a month. Okay, so I know my payments going to be at least $167 a month but obviously I’ve got to pay interest as well.

Dave Mitchell: Yeah, then we’ve got the interest component. So, just for the sake of simplicity if we look at 10% on $10,000 is $1,000 to cover a one year. And if we divide that by 12, that’s $83 a month. So, if you take $167 and $83, we’re up to $250 a month.

But as we know, that’s higher than what you’re actually going to pay because you’re going to be paying this off monthly. And each month when you make a payment, part of that payment is principal and part of that payment is interest. So, we know that the monthly payment has to be less than $250. And now it’s easy to go to the computer and search for an amortization schedule or an amortization calculator or a loan calculator and check out the numbers and I believe you’ve done that.

Doug Hoyes: I did that and the actual number is $211.

Dave Mitchell: Right, so things are making sense. We know it can’t be $250 or higher. It’s got to be less than $250. $211 seems reasonable and I think what people could do is once they’ve got that sort of benchmark upper limit of $250, they could on their own, go to the computer and do a search for an amortization calculator or loan calculator and punch in the numbers. But they’ll have to know how to apply those numbers properly.

So, they’ll have to know their principal is $10,000; their interest rate is 10% per annum or per year. That’s likely compounded either semi-annually or quarterly, and they’ll have to know that. It could be compounded monthly, but I would guess semi-annually or quarterly, probably. And they’ll have to know how long they’re going to – what the amortization period is rather, so, in this case, five years with monthly payments. And that’s what you did and that’s where you came up with – with the help of the computer of the $211 per month.

Doug Hoyes: Yeah and so what we did was a rough estimate while we’re sitting there in the dealership and then we can kind of verify it later. And I guess that’s kind of my point and that’s why I think the second thing you have to teach in school is skepticism. Stated more simply, we should teach students to think and not just blindly accept whatever the person selling us the loan tells us.

So, when you go into that car dealership to buy a car and the salesman says, yeah no problem, we can put you in this car for only $300 a month, do you know what questions to ask? You should be asking what interest rate am I paying? How long is the loan for? What other fees am I paying other than interest? Are there pre-payment penalties, late fees? What happens if I miss a payment? We focus too much on the monthly payment, often, and forget to ask the important questions.

It’s common now to be able to get a seven or eight year car loan. That’s crazy if you’re buying a used car that may only last for three years. You need to be skeptical and ask a lot of questions to make an informed decision.

If I was trying to teach skepticism in school, I’d do it with case studies. I just gave you one. You’re going to a car dealership, what questions would you ask? A 16 year old kid in high school is very interested in buying a car, so understanding the math and the skepticism, I think are very practical skills. But that’s just my opinion. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts so feel free to comment right on the show notes on hoyes.com.

I’ll be back after this quick break to wrap it up. Dave, thanks for being with me today. That was the Let’s Get Started segment right here on Debt Free in 30.

Doug Hoyes: Welcome back, it’s time for the 30 second recap of what we discussed today. On today’s show Dave Mitchell, who has 30 years experience as a high school teacher, said that teaching financial literacy in high school is very important because even if students don’t remember everything they’re taught, by planting the seed of knowledge in high school, Dave believes that we can equip students for success later in life. That’s the 30 second recap of what we discussed today.

So, what do I think of Dave’s opinion? Well, as I said at the start of the show, I don’t see a lot of point of spending a lot of time in high school teaching kids concepts that they will quickly forget. However, I am willing to concede that Dave’s concept of planting a seed does make some sense. If you’re exposed to concepts like compound interest in high school, even if you don’t fully grasp the intricacies of a calculation, it does at least allow you to know what questions to ask.

Dave’s example of the student who helped his parents when they were getting a car loan is a great story, primarily because the student was skeptical. He didn’t just take the salesman word for it. He knew which assumptions to question, he asked questions, he did the math to back up his thoughts and as a result he got his parents a better deal. That’s financial literacy in action, and that to me is the perfect result, a student who understands the basic math but more importantly also knows when to be skeptical and ask questions.

That’s our show for today. Full show notes are available on our website including links to everything we discussed today including some good loan calculators and amortization calculators and links to Dave Mitchell’s website where he has lots of great resources for math teachers and students. All of those resource are at hoyes.com, thta’s h-o-y-e-s.com. Thanks for listening, until next week, I’m Doug Hoyes. That was Debt Free in 30.

Bonus Podcast Only Segment

Doug Hoyes: It’s time for the bonus, podcast only segment here on Debt Free in 30. Our radio show is only 30 minutes. That’s why it’s called Debt Free in 30 and sometimes we have other things we’d like to talk about so we tack them in here at the end in the podcast only section.

So, Dave, let me ask you a question. I’m joined again by Dave Mitchell who was a high school teacher for 30 years and continues to work in the educational field providing resources and teaching to teachers across North America. So, if you were put in charge of the curriculum with respect to financial literacy, what kind of changes would you make? What would you be doing? What ideas, what thoughts do you have on this whole concept?

Dave Mitchell: Well, one thing that comes to mind is the idea of demonstrating to students that you can learn so much of this now on your own by going to a site like YouTube and you could for example search for “simple interest tutorial”. And there would probably be 50 tutorials or more that come up. And some of them will be quite good.

So, even if you know nothing about financial matters and the calculations involved, you can teach yourself. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re a 14 year old student in grade nine or you’re 35 and you’re working and looking at becoming more financially literate yourself. You can teach yourself.

My wife and I wanted to put in hardwood floors in our home and I decided to do it myself. I learned how by going to YouTube. Found a tutorial, watched it about 10 times, knew all the steps and I did it. And there’s a satisfaction when you learn these things for yourself, too. And I think that would be one thing we can do is make sure students understand, and that adults understand, you can learn yourself. The internet opens all these doors.

Doug Hoyes: And that’s maybe something a little new for us. Because when you and I were kids there was no such thing as YouTube.

Dave Mitchell: Exactly.

Doug Hoyes: When we were young adults there was no such thing as YouTube. And it isn’t a natural thing for us. Well, back in the day I’d go to the library to learn something. Well, nobody goes to the library anymore because everything is on your computer for the whole world. And I guess that’s a piece of practical advice then that you’re giving to people.

Dave Mitchell: Right. And it’s not just YouTube, there are other sites. There’s one for example called Khan Academy. And that is a learning site and you can go there and type in virtually any topic and get a tutorial on that topic. So, the doors are wide open.

Doug Hoyes: Yeah and I’m familiar with that site. It’s a fantastic site. My kids have certainly used it. There’s all sorts of stuff there. So, I guess whatever you learned in school, and the people who are listening to this show have probably graduated from school by now, they may have kids or grandchildren in school. Yes, what you learn in school is important. But I guess what you’re saying it’s even more important that you take responsibility for your own ongoing education for the rest of your life. There are resources out there, make use of them.

Dave Mitchell: Certainly and it’s rewarding. The satisfaction you get when you started out not knowing something and you learned how to actually accomplish something.

Doug Hoyes: It’s pretty cool and with something like YouTube or video learning you can sit there and watch. It’s kind of like being in the classroom only you can pause it, skip around and go back and watch it again until you get it. So, it’s a great resource. Great, thanks for sharing that with us Dave and thanks for being with us today. That was the bonus podcast segment right here on Debt Free in 30.