Remember:

As the parent of a 6th, 7th, or 8th grader, you know that your child has big dreams for the future. While his or her career as a veterinarian, heating technician, nurse, or agricultural engineer is years down the road, there’s plenty you can do right now to support your child’s dreams.

Developmentally, your child is at an age where he or she can make meaningful plans about the future and follow through on them. It’s also the age when he or she begins to understand the value of saving and can truly understand the impact saving for college will have on his or her future. These resources aim to help you support your child’s dreams both academically and financially.

Saving for College

Whether or not you’ve made regular contributions to your child’s college savings account, it’s never too late to get started or to renew your commitment to being a saver.

Whether or not you’ve made regular contributions to your child’s college savings account, it’s never too late to get started or to renew your commitment to being a saver. The money you save now still has more than five years to grow before your child graduates high school. If your child chooses to attend a 4- or 2-year institution, a technical program, or another type of training, this money will support their future education. Remember: every dollar saved is a dollar you don’t have to borrow and repay with interest.

            Stay on track with these savings tips:

  • Write down your savings goals on a calendar with your child. The benefits are twofold – you’re more likely to save if you write down your goal and your child will see the commitment you’re making towards his or her future.
  • Evaluate your expenditures. Look for areas in your budget where you can cut costs and redirect those funds into college savings.
  • Set up automatic transfers into your college savings account.
  • Track the value of your college savings account. It’s encouraging to watch your money grow as your child does, and it will help keep you motivated.

Involve your child in his or her college savings

This can mean encouraging your child to make small contributions to their college savings – from birthday money or allowance – or it can mean involving your child in your greater process thought process of saving for college.

This can mean encouraging your child to make small contributions to their college savings – from birthday money or allowance – or it can mean involving your child in your greater process thought process of saving for college.

Your child is at an age when he or she can understand the mechanics of saving. Take advantage of this teachable moment to get your child involved and excited about how saving for college will positively impact his or her future.

Support Your Child Academically

The money you’re saving for your child’s college education is an important first step to helping your child achieve his or her dreams.

The money you’re saving for your child’s college education is an important first step to helping your child achieve his or her dreams. As you continue to support your child’s dreams financially, there are many other ways to play an active role in helping your child’s dreams come true.

  • Get your child to school everyday and on time.
  • Help your child develop good study habits. Suggest keeping a calendar, writing down due dates, and studying for tests ahead of time.
  • Make sure your child has a quiet space to do homework and study.
  • Talk to your child about what he or she is learning at school.
  • Ensure that your child is taking challenging courses.
  • Connect with your child’s mentors or teachers at school.
  • Keep an eye on your child’s grades, and help him or her get extra help, if necessary.
  • Volunteer in your community together.
  • Help your child identify his or her interests.
  • Encourage your child to try new things.
  • Model responsible financial behavior.