Personal financial literacy is a crucial skill for middle school students, so when they land that first job, they’ll know how to manage their money wisely.

Teaching teens the basics of saving, following a budget and responsibly managing checking and credit accounts can instill good habits and help them prepare for financial independence.

Getting them engaged is the tricky part. It’s important to find relevant lessons, and hands-on activities that aren’t too simplistic or too advanced.

That’s where Dover Federal Credit Union comes in.

On Friday, DFCU sent a team that included Community Relations Manager Susan Yocum and Marketing Manager Tyler Kuhn to Everett Meredith Middle School in Middletown. Every eighth grader, all 306 students, had an opportunity to participate in a one-hour workshop on practical money skills that included information about banking, budgeting, saving, credit and financial planning.

The workshop included a mix of interactive activities and discussions about how and why we use money, and a game called “What can I afford?” to help students see the relevance of mastering the financial skills they need to live within their means.

Event organizer Counselor Dana Rideout said, “Teaching financial skills to kids before they enter college or the workforce is crucial to helping them grow into adults who can achieve financial security and success. It’s up to us to raise a generation of mindful consumers, investors, savers and givers. The sooner we start taking advantage of everyday teachable money moments, the better off our kids will be.”

The students and school officials thanked DFCU and Rideout for these important lessons.