Sara Says: Values Matter – Especially Around Money

Young Americans Center for Financial Education General Leave a Comment

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2014_Sara_Says_ValuesAsk a high school student what they want their life to look like in twenty years and what response do you get? Probably a blank stare and “uhhh…”

Teaching teens about values and how to live a life that aligns with those values is vitally important but, doesn’t get much attention in schools. I’ve had the opportunity to work with many at-risk and special needs high school youth the last few months, which has given me some great insight as to why so many kids struggle in college and in their first jobs.

Topics like this can be hard for anyone, even adults, to tackle. If you’re uncomfortable speaking to your teen, there are people who can help. There are many people you may want to seek advice from, including trusted teachers, religious leaders, and counselors.


If this is a conversation you would prefer to have at home, do some reflecting on your own before bringing your child into the conversation.

  • You may choose to write a personal vision statement, which is something I regularly do with teens. Find a thorough set of instructions here.
  • If you want to identify your personal values, but don’t want to write a vision statement, read this article.
  • When you begin the conversation with your child, you can use the questions outlined at this website.
  • You may even want to use some of the worksheets provided in this book, created by the Canadian Foundation for Economic Education.

As always, Young Americans is here to help, too! We have our own print resources that are available to you for free. All you need to do is contact me at or 303-320-3214.

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