Chris Williams, Commerce Learning Leader, writes about 'Girl Math' and Fintona's approach to Financial Literacy.
Recently, bemoaning that I had paid a significant amount for Taylor Swift tickets while the concert itself would not occur for another eight months, my Year 12 students taught me a new term, ‘Girl Math’.
For those not familiar with the social media phenomenon, ‘Girl Math’ can best be described as a thought process to make someone feel better about an expensive purchase. For example, ‘I bought a new top for $200.’
‘Don’t worry, after 20 wears at $10 each it becomes free – ‘Girl Math’.’
Aside from the term ‘Girl Math’ feeding a deep-rooted stereotype about financial management, it is simply incorrect. And it is another reason why we are driven to better educate our young people in the basics and subtleties of financial literacy.
In the journey towards achieving gender equality, empowering girls with financial skills and knowledge is incredibly important. These essential skills can set an individual up for life, equipping them to make informed and confident decisions about their financial future. Every young person, but particularly girls, given how society has been structured for so many years, can benefit from early exposure to financial education.
At Fintona, we teach financial literacy through real-world experiences and tailored learning opportunities.
Year 6 students learn how businesses strategically influence consumer behavior through visiting supermarkets. Exploring the aisles, they witness the subtle yet persuasive marketing techniques employed to capture their attention. This experience lays the groundwork for them to navigate the consumer landscape with a discerning eye.
The annual Lemonade Stand Game is an interactive platform to learn about marketing, pricing, and the fundamental principles of supply and demand. Through this business venture, students experience the basics of entrepreneurship and the importance of adaptability and strategy in a competitive market. This experiential learning approach fosters a sense of confidence and resourcefulness in financial decision-making.
Financial Literacy classes from Year 9 are tailored to the needs of students and provide a foundation for understanding more complex financial concepts. Covering topics such as the share market, property market, and personal finance, these classes imbue Fintonians with the knowledge to make sound financial decisions. Students gain insights into the dynamics of investments, budgeting, and the significance of long-term financial planning.
The overarching goal of financial literacy for girls is to create a generation of financially savvy and independent women. By arming them with the tools to understand and manage their finances, we empower students to shape their own futures, giving them the freedom to pursue their aspirations without constraints.
The importance of financial literacy for girls cannot be overstated. Educating our students to make informed financial decisions not only contributes to their individual success but also to the broader goal of building a more equitable and prosperous society. It is time we scroll past ‘Girl Math’ and focus on powerful young women commanding their own financial futures.
I am, however, still looking forward to the Taylor Swift concert, paid for in advance.
Commerce Learning Leader