Money Topics

Bank It delivers real-world financial topics and tools for children, teens and parents that
make it easier to understand, talk about and manage money.

About Bank It

Through Bank It, Parents, Teens and Children Will:

  • Learn how to make positive money choices—starting now.
  • Become more comfortable with talking about and managing money.
  • Discover how to avoid common money traps.
  • Identify easy steps to reach their financial dreams.
  • Find people and resources to support them in making money choices.


Benefits of Bank It

  • Helps improve family communication about money by providing tools, ideas and encouragement for both parents and young people.
  • Offers positive, empowering and practical guidance to help children, teens and parents make better money choices.
  • Blends sound financial information, interactive learning and the 40 Developmental Assets that kids need to grow up successfully.
  • Reaches parents, teens and children where they are most comfortable—in community-based settings.
  • Introduces all 29 of the “National Standards in K-12 Personal Finance Education” from the Jump$tart Coalition for
    Personal Financial Literacy.
  • Equips youth workers, teachers, parent educators and other leaders to address financial literacy.
  • Is easy, free, flexible and convenient to use.

Program Partners

As a collaborative project of Capital One and Search Institute, Bank It grounds financial literacy in a strength-based approach to youth and family development. This approach affirms that families who talk about financial challenges, values and choices together are stronger and make better choices.

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Our Approach

Capital One is proud to partner with Search Institute in developing the Bank It program. Bank It delivers real-world financial topics and tools for children, teens and parents that make it easier to understand, talk about and manage money. Through an interactive website and local face-to-face workshops, the program empowers families to explore budgets, goals, and strategies for making financial choices that count.

The Need for Bank It

  • The average financial literacy score for high school students is an F.1
  • Only 24 percent of teens say their parents discuss money management with them.2
  • Seventy-five percent of adults say it's important for adults to give financial guidance to children and teenagers.
    Only 36 percent of adults actually do so.3

Bank It Program Features

Bank It addresses several important gaps in the youth financial literacy field4:

  • Financial literacy topics—Bank It introduces all 29 "National Standards in K-12 Personal Finance Education” from the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.5
  • Realistic—Bank It helps children, teens and parents become more comfortable talking about and managing their money well in ways that motivate them.6
  • Flexible—Bank It is a flexible program that provides workshop modules for parents and for teens focused on 12 different major money topics. Modules for parents and children in grades 3 to 6 focus on the 9 most relevant money topics for that age group.
  • Accessible—Bank It was developed for a fifth-grade reading level, making it useful for youth and adult populations that may struggle with math and reading.
  • Community based—Bank It is intentionally designed for use in community-based settings (such as community centers and
    youth programs).
  • Youth development focus—Bank It blends financial knowledge with Search Institute's research-based framework of the 40 Developmental Assets, a widely used approach to youth development.7 Learn more.
  1. Lewis Mandell, L. (2009). The financial literacy of young American adults, an Analysis of the Jump$tart Coalition's 2008 Biennial Survey.
  2. Capital One (2009, August 11). Capital One's annual survey finds parents plan more back-to-school shopping cutbacks this year.
  3. Scales, P. C., Benson, P. L., & Roehlkepartain, E. C. (2001). Grading grown-ups. Minneapolis: Search Institute.
  4. See McCormick, M. H. (2008). The effectiveness of youth financial education: A review of the literature. Washington, DC: New America Foundation.
  5. Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy (2007). National standards in K-12 personal finance education (3rd Ed.). Washington, DC: Author.
  6. Mandell, L., & Klein, L. S. (2007). Motivation and financial literacy. Financial Services Review, 16, 105-116.
  7. Scales, P. C., & Leffert, N. (2004). Developmental assets: A synthesis of the scientific research on adolescent development (2nd ed.). Minneapolis: Search Institute.

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Assets for Success

Asset building is a positive approach to working with young people (from birth to age 18). It focuses on cultivating the relationships, skills, values and commitments kids need to grow up healthy, caring and responsible. It is based on Search Institute's research-based framework of 40 Developmental Assets.

Download your free copy of the 40 Developmental Assets from

The Power of the 40 Developmental Assets

  • The more assets young people experience, the better. Children and teens with high levels of Developmental Assets are less likely to engage in high-risk behaviors and are more likely to engage in thriving behaviors. For example, teens with high levels of Developmental Assets (31 to 40 Developmental Assets) are 15 times less likely to use alcohol than those with 10 or fewer Developmental Assets.1
  • Developmental Assets matter for all groups of children and teens. These research findings hold true across all groups of young people studied, regardless of racial-ethnic background, socioeconomic background and community size.2
  • The 40 Developmental Assets framework offers common ground and a shared vision for what young people need to succeed. The framework is used in schools, financial institutions, youth programs, parenting programs, faith communities, neighborhoods, businesses and government.

Why the 40 Developmental Assets Work

  • The focus is on strengths, not problems. The 40 Developmental Assets recognize that young people are resources to their communities, not problems to be fixed.
  • Young people are recognized as resources, and their involvement is vital.
  • Everyone can build Developmental Assets. Asset builders can include young people, parents, youth workers, bankers, neighbors and teachers.
  • Developing meaningful, sustained relationships is a major focus. The 40 Developmental Assets are built through relationships in workshops, within families, among peers, across generations and throughout the community.

How the 40 Developmental Assets Enrich Financial Literacy

  • Being intentional about building the 40 Developmental Assets ensures that financial literacy efforts not only meet financial and educational standards but also contribute to young people's overall growth and success.
  • Bank It highlights important, measurable financial literacy goals in the context of positive youth development and the
    40 Developmental Assets.
  • It emphasizes the importance—and power—of nurturing relationships through a Developmental Asset approach to financial literacy.
  1. Benson, Peter. All Kids Are Our Kids: What Communities Must Do to Raise Caring and Responsible Children and Adolescents. Second Edition. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2006, 81.
  2. Ibid., 59-98.

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