(WKBN) – A new survey from the University of Michigan shows that 40% of teens work. The Ohio Department of Commerce shared the data to highlight how important it is for young people to get into the workforce and learn critical life skills.

Many times, summer jobs are a teen’s first opportunity to earn their own money and make purchases on their own, which is critical to financial success, the agency said.

“Not only can it boost their confidence, but it can teach them how to manage their time and develop organizational skills,” said Superintendent Kevin Allard. “It gives them the opportunity to be managed by others, interact with the public and the ability to socialize with a different network of peers.”  

Minors who are 16 and 17 do not need a work permit for a summer job and do not have the same hours restrictions as during the school year, but the 30-minute break requirement still stands.

During the school year, work permits are needed and can be obtained online. The work permits can be filled out and taken to the minor’s school, which issues a work permit.

Teens under 16 can’t work more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week.

The Ohio Department of Commerce offers these tips to help teach teens about finances:

  • Lead by example. Instead of lecturing teens on how to handle their money or how to make better decisions, let them see you handle your money responsibly. This doesn’t mean you have to show them bank statements but being honest about your financial priorities and discussing your thought process when making financial decisions is helpful. Kids, including teens, model adult behavior, and what better way to set the tone than to implement healthy financial habits right before their eyes.
  • Ask for their input. The average person makes over 2,000 decisions an hour, and some of those decisions may include money. Some of those decisions can be influenced by your mood or other external factors, so sometimes speaking your choices out loud, can make the decision-making process easier. This is where you can include your teen. It’s a great way to introduce planning concepts, discuss “wants versus needs” and overall have a really great conversation with your child – you may be surprised by their ideas.
  • Learn together. Teens see it all, in fact sometimes they might learn about something before you. If your kids ask questions you can’t answer, or if you’re looking for more information about a financial concept, ask your teens to help you look for information and talk about it together. This is where you can open their eyes to basic budgeting and saving techniques, and they can show you how to use the newest budgeting app.

For more resources on how to teach financial literacy to children and young adults, visit the Ohio Department of Commerce’s website.