Maybe your son is saving money to buy a car but has no idea how much insurance would run along with interest on a loan. Or your daughter wants to know what’s the big deal about earning interest on her bank account.
You could sit down with your kids and try to explain these pocketbook topics, or do a quick online search for textbook definitions of everyday financial concepts.
You can also turn to Napkin Finance — a free website that can explain the complicated terminology in a creative and entertaining way.
The brainchild of Tina Hay during her days at Harvard Business School, Napkin Finance touts itself as a multimedia company that aims to introduce people, especially young people, to complicated financial concepts through video, text and, yes, napkins.
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Except these are no ordinary table napkins.
Napkin Finance has created essentially online infographics with key words, arrows, drawings and other diagrams that break down and explain a topic, such as college financial aid, the stock market and buying insurance.
Each lesson can be digested in about 30 seconds.
If your child is more of a visual learner, Napkinfinance.com is a site worth visiting for learning your financial ABCs.
The napkins — there are more than a dozen of them — were critiqued by bankers, financial advisers and illustrators to make sure they succinctly cover the topic.
Some of the most popular napkins, according to Napkin Finance, cover budgeting, borrowing, investing, compound interest and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.
Napkin Finance also keeps current. There’s a bitcoin napkin on the new-age currency, and during the presidential campaign Napkin Finance created some election napkins that broke down into tidbits some of the key economic issues facing the country, such as income taxes, student loans and the minimum wage.
Steve Rosen is assistant business editor at The Kansas City Star: 816-234-4879, email@example.com.
Upgrade your financial smarts
Log on to the free website Napkinfinance.com.