Museums, mates and money are vital skills for children say parents

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– Children best prepared for adulthood with cultural activities, socialising and financial education –

– Santander makes financial education fun with new 1|2|3 Mini Zone for children –

Visiting a museum, hanging out with friends and learning about money are some of the most important life skills children can learn to prepare them for adulthood, a survey of Britain’s parents now reveals.

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As Britain’s schools break up for half term, nearly half (45%) of all parents in the survey for Santander say visiting a museum, art gallery or other cultural activity plays an important part in developing well-rounded children. More than three-quarters (74%) believe children benefit from socialising with friends, but learning about money is seen to be the most important factor in establishing a child’s life skills, according to 81%.

Psychologist Donna Dawson says the findings underline the importance of encouraging children to develop a wide range of skills in preparation for adult life. “This research shows parents’ attitudes to those life skills they believe are important for the development of their children outside of school, and much of this will be based on their own life-experience and expectations,” she says.

“Parents want their children to become well-rounded individuals, with a mixture of ‘hard’ skills such as managing money or reading, with ‘softer’ abilities like social interaction and cultural appreciation. To this end, it is vital to instil this mixture in children at an early age, to ensure a strong foundation is created for adulthood.”

Making finances fun for children

To help children learn how to manage their money, and support parents in taking an active role in their children’s financial education, Santander has launched a fun, educational microsite – the 1|2|3 Mini Zone.

The 1|2|3 Mini Zone features a savings calculator tool for children to set and track their savings goals, a Mini Jets game where youngsters collect coins against the clock, as well as helpful information for parents including a guide to financial terms and a video to show them how to use the site.

Sue Willis, Director of Customer Service at Santander, said: “Going out to play during the holidays and visiting different places can be great fun. A lot can be learned from those experiences, having fun while learning at the same time. And that’s the aim with the Santander 1|2|3 Mini Zone, where children can learn how to manage money well but have fun too so it really has an impact.”

The 1|2|3 Mini Accounts are available to anyone aged 0 to 18, and reward customers with 1.00% AER on the total account balance from £100, 2.00% AER on the total balance from £200, and 3.00% AER on the total account balance from £300 up to a maximum of £2,000.

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