Welcome, Boston Saves families! We are so glad you have started planning now for your child’s future college or career training.
Here are a few ways you can start planning and saving for your child’s future with Boston Saves:
1) Open a financial account for your child’s future.
Your child will have a Boston Saves account for their Boston Saves Dollars, but to save your own money for your child, you will need to open a financial account (savings, 529, or checking) for their future. If you do not have an account like this, you can open a savings or checking account with a bank or credit union, or open a 529 account through MEFA (Massachusetts Education Financing Authority) or through another state. Be sure to set up online banking so that you can log in to your account on the internet.
If you do not want to open a financial account in your name, you may open a custodial account instead. A custodial account does not need a social security number or identification card. This account is held by the Boston Educational Development Fund for your child. To open a custodial account, contact email@example.com.
2) Log in to the Online Savings Center.
If you are new to the Savings Center, you will need to register first using your child’s State Assigned Student Identifier (SASID). You can get your child’s SASID from the office of your child’s school. During the COVID-19 pandemic, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org to get your child’s SASID number.
Once you have registered, you can log in to the Savings Center to see the money in your child’s Boston Saves account. You can also link a financial account of your own. This way, you will be able to see all of your savings for your child in one place online.
3) Get Boston Saves Dollars for your child!
You can grow the $50 in your child’s Boston Saves account to as much as $115 in the first year of the program – just by getting Boston Saves Dollars. There are three ways to get Boston Saves Dollars:
- Link a financial account to your child’s Boston Saves account online ($25)
- Save $25 for your child in a three-month period ($5/period…up to $20/year)
- Read with your child for 20 days per month in a three-month period ($5/period…up to $20/year)
4) Come to free Boston Saves events to learn more about saving and planning.
In the first week of March, your child’s school may have a Boston Saves Welcome Event where you can learn more about the program and get help logging in to your child’s Boston Saves account. You will hear more about the Boston Saves Welcome Event when the day gets closer.
Boston Saves also has other events at schools that make saving and planning even easier. These events cover such areas as:
- safe banking
- savings tips
- career play for children
Look for information from your child’s school about events like these.
5) Talk with your child about saving for the future.
Talking with your child now about what it takes to reach their dreams can set them on a path to success. This can be as simple as talking about money, their dreams for the future, and the way saving can make their dreams come true. There are also fun games and lessons you can do together at home:
The books below teach students about math and money. They are listed by age range. Click on the links to find these books at your nearest branch of the Boston Public Library.
- How Do Dinosaurs Count to Ten? by Jane Yolen (1-4)
- How Do Dinosaurs Count to Ten? [Spanish] by Jane Yolden (1-4)
- Quack and Count by Keith Baker (1-4)
- Ten Black Dots by Donald Crews (2-5)
- Fish Eyes by Lois Ehlert (2-6)
- My Granny Went to Market by Stella Blackstone (3-5)
- 26 Letters and 99 Cents by Tara Hoben (3-7)
- The Berenstain Bears’ Dollars and Sense by Stan and Jan Berenstain (3-7)
- Teddy Bear Counting by Barbara Barbieri McGrath (3-7)
- A Dollar for Penny by Dr. Julie Glass (4-6)
- Sheep in a Shop by Nancy Shaw (4-7)
- The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble with Money by Stan and Jan Berenstain (4-7)
- Curious George Saves His Pennies by Margaret and H.A. Rey (4-7)
- Owen Foote, Money Man by Stephanie Greene (4-7)
- A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams (4-8)
- Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst (4-8)
- Bunny Money by Rosemary Wells (4-8)
- Just Enough Carrots by Stuart J. Murphy (4-8)
- Just Saving My Money by Mercer Mayer (4-8)
- City by Numbers by Stephen Johnson (5-8)
- Follow the Money by Loreen Leedy (5-8)
- One Cent, Two Cents, Old Cent, New Cent by Bonnie Worth (5-8)
- One Is a Snail, Ten Is a Crab by April Pulley Sayre (5-8)
- Pigs will be Pigs by Amy Axelrod (5-8)
- Math for All Seasons by Greg Tang (5-8)
- Money: A Rich History by Jon Anderson (5-8)
- A Dollar, a Penny, How Much and How Many? by Brian Cleary (5-9)
- A Fraction’s Goal - Parts of a Whole by Brian Cleary (5-9)
- Lots and Lots of Coins by Margarette S. Reid (6-8)
- All About Money by Erin Roberson (6-9)
- The Coin Counting Book by Rozanne Lanczak Williams (6-9)
- Once Upon a Dime [EBook] by Nancy Kelly Allen (6-9)
- The Go-Around Dollar by Barbara Johnston Adams (6-9)
- Amelia Bedelia Means Business by Herman Parish (6-10)
- Money by Joe Cribb (8-12)
- Neale S. Godfrey’s Ultimate Kids’ Money Book by Neale Godfrey (8-12)
- Lunch Money by Andrew Clements (8-12)
- How To Steal a Dog by Barbara O’Connor (8-12)
- The Everything Kids’ Money Book by Brette McWhorter Sember (9-12)
- The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies (9-12)
- A Smart Girl’s Guide to Money by Nancy Holyoke (9-12)
- Show Me the Money: How Money Affects You and Your World by Alvin Hall (10-13)
6) Keep saving!
When it comes to saving, every little bit helps. So try to put away as much money as you can. There are also tips you can use to learn more about how to grow your money:
Below are free programs from the City of Boston that can help city residents increase their financial well-being, train for better jobs, and pursue a college degree. Click the links below to learn more about each program, including eligibility guidelines.
Open a Bank Account
Find a safe and affordable bank account to better protect, save, and access your money with the help of Bank On Boston. To learn more, visit the Bank On Boston webpage.
Learn how to Build Credit
Attend a credit-building workshop from Boston Builds Credit to learn how to improve your credit score. To learn more, visit the Boston Builds Credit website.
Get Tax Help
Get your taxes done by a trained tax preparer at one of dozens of Boston Tax Help Coalition sites across the city. To learn more, visit the Boston Tax Help Coalition website or call 617-635-4500
Get Financial Coaching
Take advantage of long-term, one-on-one financial coaching and access to computers and printers at the Roxbury Center for Financial Empowerment, located in Dudley Square. To learn more, call 617-541-2671
Job Training Programs
Train for City Jobs
Train to become an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) or earn a Hoisting or Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) through City Academy. Graduates are eligible for living wage jobs with the City of Boston. To learn more, visit the City Academy webpage.
Become an Apprentice
Train for living wage union apprenticeships in construction or hospitality through the Greater Boston American Apprenticeship Initiative (GBAAI). Some participants can also earn college credit on the job and receive tuition assistance to finish their degree. To learn more, visit the GBAAI webpage.
Prepare for a Hospitality Career
Prepare for training in the culinary or housekeeping fields and earn a free laptop. To learn more, visit the Bridge to Hospitality webpage or contact Sharon at 617-541-2612.
Attend College for Free
Attend community college free of tuition or mandatory fees through the Tuition-Free Community College Plan. A sister program, Boston Bridge, also gives graduates the option of continuing at a 4-year state university for free. Eligible participants must have earned a high school credential in the past year. To learn more, visit the Tuition-Free Community College webpage.
Below are tips from across the web that may help make saving easier for you. This list does not constitute an endorsement or financial advice from Boston Saves.
Below are tips from across the web that you may find helpful for building your finances. This list does not constitute an endorsement or financial advice from Boston Saves.
7) Think about becoming a Boston Saves Family Champion
Are you excited about Boston Saves and want to share the program with other families? If so, you may want to become a Boston Saves Family Champion. A Family Champion is a parent or family member of a Boston Saves student who learns more about the program and shares information with other families at Boston Saves events. Family Champions can get up to $450 in gift cards for their time. Learn more here.
If you would like to become a Family Champion, please fill out this Family Champion interest form. Thank you!
Still have questions?