The White House thinks one way to avoid another financial meltdown is to teach tomorrow's leaders about money today. Money as You Grow.org is designed to increase the financial literacy of kids starting at the tender age of three.
The Haan family is now boosting its financial lessons with a new government website called Money As You Grow. The Haans say even 5-year-old Dietrich can get something out of it.
"Five is a great age to start. He can understand the concept of earning money and spending it because he certainly wants enough things. Those lessons can start early on," Shelly Haan said.
The interactive website divides financial concepts into five age groups. You click on the age group and that leads to four core lessons. Each lesson has three to six activities.
"There was what Social Security meant and I think it's a good way to help kids know what to do with money at different age levels. Starting at three to five, that's really good for kids just going into kindergarten to learn about money," 11-year-old Dimitri Haan said.
Dimitri is saving up his weekly allowance and says kids do need to know more about money.
"I think they should know the difference between wants and needs. Some kids might want to buy a ton of stuff; all the stuff they want, but forget about all the stuff they need," Dimitri said.
Shelly says the website is effective because it's on the computer and kids like learning with technology.
"They see mom and dad use the credit card; what does that mean? What goes along with that? In reading through the website, I was really impressed. It hit some great points I wouldn't have even thought about," Shelly said.
Shelly says the site is just helping reinforce the financial lessons she's already started.
"Learning the true value of money," Shelly Haan said.
The website covers everything from what interest is to identity theft and saving for college.