Help Kids Build Money Skills With These Budgeting Concepts

Aug 08, 2023 Family & Finances

Explore how you can help motivate kids to learn budgeting concepts and set them up for future financial success.

A woman and a young girl sitting at a table and using a laptop.

As a parent or guardian, it’s valuable to help your children understand the concepts of budgeting and saving money. However, convincing kids to save their money instead of immediately spending it on a new toy or treat can be difficult.

Help kids understand the importance of good money management with these tips.

Building Money Skills

Create Good Money Habits

According to a study by the University of Cambridge, children begin to develop money habits by the time they’re seven years old. The Save, Share, and Spend Method can be a great teaching tool for kids to learn how to budget.

Get started by having kids create Save, Share, and Spend labels to place on separate jars or piggy banks. Any time they receive money, have them divide it into the jars on their own.

Explain that the Spend jar is intended for buying items they need or want or to put away money for short-term goals, the Savings jar is meant for items with bigger price tags or for their future, and the Share jar is meant to give back to special causes.

To encourage saving, you can even consider paying kids dividends on deposits made to their jars or piggy banks.

Set A Goal

There’s no better way to motivate kids to budget and save than by trying to encourage your child to reach their goals. Encourage kids to come up with an attainable short-term goal and develop a plan for saving their money.

Consider printing an image of what they want and placing it in their bedroom or near their spend jar so they’re constantly reminded of what they’re working toward and are less tempted to spend their money on trivial things.

Lead By Example

It’s great to talk to kids about budgeting and saving, but it’s more impactful when they see parents or caretakers create and follow a budget. An easy way to illustrate the concept is by getting them involved with shopping.

Before going to the store, create a list of what is needed and determine how much you’ll spend. You can even review store ads and search for coupons together for additional savings. While at the store, make sticking to your shopping list and budget a team effort.

Use A Savings Account

Another way to get kids interested in saving is by showing them how their money can grow. Consider opening a Youth Membership Savings Account that earns dividends to get kids excited about learning how to manage their money.

When you visit your financial institution, bring them along and allow them to make decisions regarding contributions to their savings account. To encourage continued savings, periodically review statements together to track progress and earnings.


Teaching children to be money-savvy is a process that takes time. With effort and consistency, you’ll help instill good financial habits that’ll help them for years to come.

Two young girls playing on a playground.
Life Guidance for:

Raising Money-Smart Kids

Talking to kids about money is not only acceptable but also encouraged. Use our tips to help your child understand and practice age-appropriate money management skills.

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