So, you’ve decided to have children. Fantastic news. Small children can be a real blessing to you and your family. They are full of joy, bubbles, laughter and unicorn dust, or so the articles will tell you.
I’ve found that what most articles won’t tell you is that your precious daughter or son will grow up past the small child stage and develop into what most researchers term an “adolescent”. And from there, they inevitably descend into adulthood. I’m sorry, but that’s the truth.
And to avoid any unnecessary financial burdens on yourself, it’s best to educate these bubble-filled joys of small children the basics of money. Children who learn to manage and make their own money will be happier, healthy and demand less from you, so it’s a win-win.
By age 3, you could be already be teaching your child some amazing money facts, including that Daddy (and Mommy) does not have all the money in the world. You can’t start that lesson too early. And here are some other lessons you (and your child) could benefit from learning.
1. Studies have concluded that 3-year-olds can indeed understand even the most simple of money concepts like bills and coins.
* Teach your child to collect an entire set of coins and bills. Get them to practice recognizing the different denominations.
2. Buy your child a money jar. Or just clean out the mayonnaise jar and write the word “MONEY” on the front.
* Depending on how much mayo you use, you should give your child three different jars, labelled SPENDING, SAVING and SHARING.
* Teach your child that the money they get doesn’t all go into the SPENDING jar, and that each jar is important.
* Use the SHARING jar for charities that are important to them. Each time they save some money, the child can learn about giving to people that are less fortunate than themselves.
3. Start to set goals. By teaching your child to save for something specific, they can start to think about long term gain, rather than short-term gain.
* Money goals are a great way to get children to take charge of their savings. But I would steer clear of suggesting expensive goals, like puppies and ponies. These might take longer to save for, and the child might lose interest. You also don’t want puppies or ponies in your home.
4. Allow your child to spend his money. By taking their own money to the store, they can own the experience of buying something they have always wanted.
* It’s been shown that things bought by earned money rather than gifted money are more cherished and loved. I would suggest using this argument the next time your child’s birthday comes around. They might not understand it, but you know deep down that you’re being a good parent by giving them no money.
* Part of the fun is planning the trip and whether they will spend it all at once, or whether they will use it over several trips.
5. Try a yard or a garage sale. Yard sales give your children a better way to talk about earning and making money.
* Yard sales clean out all the junk your children have accumulated over the years. And by putting price stickers on them, you can teach your kids the value of the stuff they have, just before you get rid of it.
* And by selling the stuff they don’t play with anymore, your kids can make some extra money to fill their own jars with.
* You could also teach your kids about taxes as well, taking some money off the top of what they make. One of the greatest of all inventions is “Parent Tax”.
Your education for your children can benefit them for years to come. Not to mention that you will have the satisfaction of having raised them correctly and to be productive members of society. Have a great day and remember to share this article!