A new website aimed at educating five to seven-year-olds about money has been launched by the Northern Bank.
The launch of Moneyville.co.uk follows findings that five-year-olds are interested in money and influence what their parents buy.
In the biggest survey of children’s attitude to money ever carried out in Northern Ireland, it emerged that over 80% of children influence what their parents buy for them.
More than 60% asked questions about money and the same percentage got pocket money — with over 90% able to decide for themselves how to spend it.
However, 39% of parents said their child had little or no understanding of where money comes from — and over 90% of them expressed an interest in material which could increase children’s basic knowledge of money.
Moneyville.co.uk is the first website of its kind in northern Europe and has been developed to complement Northern Ireland’s school curriculum.
Moneyville is a virtual town where children are introduced to basic money management skills through online games. Characters like Penny the Shopkeeper, the Mayor of Moneyville and a friendly wizard show children how they can earn gold and silver coins by completing tasks which can be used to buy items in the Moneyville shop.
Moneyville includes useful suggestions and resources for both parents and teachers.
The site was developed by Northern Bank with help from experts including child psychologists and the Curriculum Council.
Jill Black from the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA) Northern Ireland, said: "The Northern Ireland curriculum aims to empower young people to achieve their potential and to help them make informed and responsible choices and decisions throughout their lives. This includes developing financial capability.”