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News Releases

BMO Harris Bank, Canadian Foundation for Economic Education and Chicago Fed Co-Host Money Smart Week® Event Focused on Kids and Money

 - April 27th is Talk With Our Kids About Money Day (TWOKAM), a financial educational program created by the Canadian Foundation for Economic Education (CFEE) in partnership with BMO Harris Bank

- Chicago-wide student Money Fair competition at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago celebrates TWOKAM and Money Smart Week

- The program, which is aligned with school curricula, provides resources for teachers and families to help start and continue conversations about money and personal finances

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS--(Marketwired - April 27, 2016) -
To promote the importance of including financial literacy in the education system across the United States and in celebrat ion of Talk With Our Kids About Money Day and Money Smart Week, Chicago students are today participating in a Money Fair competition at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Many schools across Illinois and Wisconsin will also be devoting a portion of the day to talk with their students about financial subjects.

Talk With Our Kids About Money, actively supported by BMO Harris Bank, encourages parents and teachers to have conversations with youth about money and personal finances. The annual program takes place on the last Wednesday in April with a "Home Program" for families and a "School Program" for 7th grade students and teachers. Parents and teachers are encouraged to visit for free access to current resources and curriculum ideas throughout the year.

Talk With Our Kids About Money Day was piloted in Chicago in 2014 and expanded across Illinois and Wisconsin last year. The program has received the Governor of Wisconsin's Financial Literacy Award, and Governor Scott Walker has proclaimed April 27, 2016 as Talk With Our Kids About Money Day across the state.

"Talk With Our Kids About Money Day program enables educators and parents to set a strong financial foundation for youth to embark on a healthy financial path," said Chris Begy, U.S. Country Head and CEO of BMO Financial Corporation. "BMO Harris Bank's partnership with CFEE will help close the gap among our youth centered on money topics."

In an effort to carry the program's mission forward, BMO Harris Bank employee volunteers will today be visiting students in grades five through seven at various schools in Chicago, Minneapolis, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Phoenix, Seattle and Milwaukee. The volunteers will join the students for interactive financial discussions, fun skits and giveaways.

"Preparing our kids for their financial futures is a shared responsibility involving parents at home and teachers in our schools," said Gary Rabbior, President of CFEE. "TWOKAM and the Money Fair programs provide an excellent opportunity for such collaboration to make a real difference in the knowledge and skills our children will need in order to make future financial decisions with confidence and competence."

Highlights of the TWOKAM School Program:

Teachers are provided easy-to-use, complete lesson plans that are cross-curricular and make it easy to integrate money topics into a broad range of subject areas, including social studies, math, science, environmental studies, music and art. Teachers and students at all grade levels are encouraged to participate.

In addition, the program offers:

  • Group discussion and debate ideas
  • Resources and interactive tools for teachers
  • Links to other resources and programs
  • Links to background material on financial literacy and resea rch results

Highlights of the TWOKAM Parent Program:

The TWOKAM Parent Program provides free online access to fun, easy and engaging activities that stimulate kids' curiosity and encourage questions that lead to learning and resources that are organized by age range. The program includes a wide variety of activities, including movies, books, songs, crafts, local trips, and more. It also has helpful links and resources for parents, including a variety of articles offering different views on allowances.

About BMO Harris Bank

BMO Harris Bank provides a broad range of personal banking products and solutions through more than 600 branches and approximately 1,300 ATMs in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Arizona and Florida. BMO Harris Bank's commercial banking team provides a combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and mid-market focus throughout the U.S. For more information about BMO Harris Bank, go to the company fact sheet. Banking products and services are subject to bank or credit approval. BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group, a North American financial organization with approximately 1,600 branches, and CDN $699 billion in assets (as of January 31, 2016).

About CFEE

CFEE is a federally chartered, non-profit, non-partisan organization, founded in 1974, that works to improve economic and financial literacy and enterprising capability. CFEE works collaboratively with ministries and departments of education along with school boards, schools, educators, and teacher associations. Overall, CFEE aspires to help people of all ages be better prepared to undertake their economic roles, responsibilities, and decisions with confidence and competence.

For further information:
Media Contacts:
BMO Harris Bank
Emily Penate
(312) 461-7956

Jan Wishart
(847) 302-8752

Twitter: @BMOmedia

Twitter: @_CFEE

Twitter: @TWOKAMday