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Big Sean’s latest collaboration? Teaching kids about finance—on Minecraft

All too busy soaking up the basics of algebra, world wars, and Shakespearean sonnets at school, you probably learned very little, if anything, about how to save money, pay taxes, or handle credit. While it’s a pivotal part of daily adult life, financial literacy isn’t prioritized in school. Less than a third of adults ages 18 to 54 can answer basic financial questions. “You’re teaching the Pythagorean theorem—and that’s great,” says Diane Morais, president of consumer and commercial products at Ally Bank. “But how about how to balance a checkbook?”

It turns out that the unlikely answer to this omission was a multi-platinum-selling rapper and the most popular video game of all time.

Since 2019, musician Big Sean’s nonprofit foundation has worked with Ally Financial to place minority college students into internships, and onto a path toward economic success. Four interns from that debut year came up with a bold idea: to create a brand-new world in the video game Minecraft, which would teach middle-school kids to be financially literate. And so launched Fintropolis, which young, virtual explorers can now play at home or in school, to make them better prepared for life’s pecuniary necessities.

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