Last week was my first time to ever have a speaking engagement not wearing shoes! Why? Because it was held at Cheeky Monkeys, a soft-play area for kids that is also used for various children’s events such as birthday parties, school activities, and financial learning events like the one I took part in. The event was “One Student to a Million: Cha-ching Shaping a Financial Literate Generation,” a collaboration of Junior Achievement Philippines, Inc. (JA Philippines) and Prudence Foundation, the community investment arm in Asia and Africa of Prudential plc, Pru Life UK’s parent company.
In 2016, Prudence Foundation and JA Asia Pacific developed a financial education package for schools built around cartoon music videos called Cha-ching curriculum. Materials include support package for students, teachers, and parents that can be accessed online, and take-home activities, games, and comics to engage everyone in a fun way.
It has been a privilege and pleasure to have taken part in various Cha-ching activities over the last eight years, giving talks, both face-to-face and online, delivering the keynote speech of a graduation for teachers, taking part in panel discussions, etc. Last week was no exception, and I am just as excited to see the program reach one million students this coming school year 2023-2024.
In the same event, Prudence Foundation Executive Director, Marc Fancy, talked about the positive reviews of the program. It has not only garnered awards such as the Silver Asia-Pacific Stevie Award in Innovation in Community Relations and Money Awareness and Inclusion Awards, to name a few, but has also seen actual improvements in the children who took up the curriculum, based on assessments for the period ending 2021.
Data from the Cha-ching Curriculum Review
I requested Marc Fancy to share with me the assessments he discussed and his office immediately sent the same. For today’s article, I wish to discuss the three elements that they reviewed: Knowledge, Attitude, and Behavior. The tables I’m sharing are those specific to the Philippines.
Knowledge – refers to learning the concepts. Below is the table showing the improvement in student knowledge about money before and after participating in Cha-ching.
Attitude – refers to the points of view or beliefs imbibed about money. It refers to how one feels about money. Below is the table showing the improvement in student attitude before and after participating in Cha-ching.
Behavior – refers to actions taken about money. Below is the table showing the improvement in student behavior before and after participating in Cha-ching.
After five years of the Cha-Ching curriculum in Asia, they see the positive impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of young people across the region. The movement aims to reach a million soon, and even more in the years to come.
I was delighted to take note of these three elements in the report. It’s because we can all apply them when we are aiming to improve on something – be it our financial condition, career, relationships, and other important aspects of life.
1. We start with knowledge. We have to understand what we are trying to improve on. When it comes to money matters, these are the financial concepts that each individual needs to know. (For the Cha-ching program, they simplify the concepts into “earn, save, spend, donate” that is sung by the Cha-ching band that will surely be your LSS once you listen to it. For older people, you can test your knowledge of these basic concepts in the first part of the FQ Test, available in English and Tagalog.)
2. After the knowledge is acquired, you either reject it or accept it. If you accept the principles learned, you now have the necessary attitude towards the goal of having a healthy financial wellbeing. This will help you move to that direction because your feelings now align with it, avoiding the usual friction if the correct attitude is not yet there.
3. The actual behavior is what will make the real difference. It is the action that you take to earn, save, invest, donate, bringing you to your goal of a healthy financial wellbeing. (You can test your actual money behavior in the second part of the FQ Test, available in English and Tagalog.)
I wish to add a fourth element.
4. Design your environment. Because we are both Makatwirang Mak and Emotional Emong (See FQ Book 2 to know more about our rational and emotional sides.), we have to help ourselves do the right thing on a consistent basis that may not be always humanly possible if we are left to just rely on our imperfect self-discipline and erratic will power. Our environment affects our actual behavior more than we think. Moreover, the environment that we’ve created has made it so much more difficult for anyone to always save and invest. Our social media environment has made all the “inggit factors” ubiquitous. It is time to sanitize our environment to make it easier for our Makatwirang Mak to prevail over our Emotional Emong when it comes to handling our money.
We are now in the last quarter of the year. How have you been with your goals? Why don’t you do your own assessment. Use the four elements above and ask yourself these questions:
- Have I acquired sufficient knowledge to achieve my big goal this year?
- Do I already have the right attitude to help me achieve this goal?
- Do I behave accordingly to achieve my goal?
- Have I designed my environment to make it easy for me to always behave accordingly?
I wish you the best during this last quarter of the year. Cheers to High FQ!
1. Take the FQ Test now to see where you are in your FQ journey. Click here.
2. If you want to enhance your FQ, get your copy of the FQ books. They are also good gift ideas for this coming Christmas.
3. Join us in this fundraising.
This article is also published in FQMom.com
Attribution: Images from JA Philippines