31 May 2024 | Blog

Introducing children to superannuation concepts


Superannuation, a fundamental element of retirement planning in Australia, often seems like a labyrinth of intricate terminology that can be overwhelming for many. This article explores methods to make superannuation an engaging and integral part of your child’s financial literacy.

Introducing Super Accounts

Imagine possessing a magical treasure box where each coin you deposit multiplies, enabling you to one day cease working and enjoy a prosperous retirement. This is the basic principle behind a superannuation account, which serves as a dedicated savings account for your retirement years.

What is a Super Account?

From your first job, a part of your salary, known as the ‘Superannuation Guarantee’ provided by your employer, starts accumulating in your super account. These funds are securely invested, gradually growing throughout your career.

Learning Activity

To illustrate this to your child, use a transparent jar as a visual tool. Each time they perform a task and earn a little money, add it to the jar while explaining how it symbolises the gradual growth of super accounts through consistent work contributions.

The Hungry Hungry Hippos of Super

Visualise each of your super accounts as a Hungry Hungry Hippo game piece, each voraciously consuming your coins (money). Much like the game, where each hippo strives to capture as many marbles as possible, each super account incurs fees that deplete your savings.

Consolidating Your Hippos

Consider the benefits if, rather than maintaining four separate Hippos, you could merge them into one large Hippo that is more efficient and consumes fewer marbles. This represents the benefits of consolidating your super accounts into one, reducing the fees that diminish your savings.

Learning Activity

Reintroduce the jar from the first activity, but now add a Hungry Hungry Hippo. Each week, let your child feed a marble to the hippo, explaining that with three hippos (super accounts), they would need three marbles to sustain them.

The Hunt for Super Treasures

Imagine embarking on an exciting quest for treasure. This journey features paths of varying difficulty, some offering smaller, easily accessible treasures (low risk, low return) and others presenting larger treasures hidden behind more formidable challenges (high risk, high return).

The Safe Shoreline (Low Risk, Low Return)

Near the shoreline, treasures are found in shallow waters, easily reachable with minimal effort but offering modest rewards. This is akin to investing in bonds or savings accounts, which are safer but yield lower returns.

The Mysterious Jungle (Medium Risk, Medium Return)

Just beyond the shoreline lies a jungle, more challenging to traverse but hiding greater treasures. These represent balanced funds, which offer a moderate risk and return, suitable for those seeking a bit more excitement but not extreme risks.

The Mountain of Legends (High Risk, High Return)

At the farthest point, a mountain conceals the largest treasures. Reaching them involves steep ascents and uncertain paths, sometimes requiring retreat and reassessment. This parallels high-risk investments like stocks, where the potential for substantial returns is significant, albeit with a turbulent journey.

Learning Activity

To demonstrate these concepts, set up three cups to represent the different investment paths.

  • Place Cup 1 a meter away from the start with one marble
  • Place Cup 2 two meters away with two marbles
  • Please Cup 3 three meters away with nine marbles.

Invite your child to throw marbles into the cups, discussing how risk correlates with potential returns.


Educating your children about superannuation does more than teach them about money; it equips them with the confidence to manage their financial futures from an early age, by demystifying complex concepts through relatable analogies and interactive activities.

The information contained on this website has been provided as general advice only. The contents have been prepared without taking account of your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. You should, before you make any decision regarding any information, strategies or products mentioned on this website, consult your own financial adviser to consider whether that is appropriate having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs.

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