Teaching kids about money is a responsibility that falls largely on parents. While it may be rather intimidating, raising money smart kids is not beyond any parent’s reach.
A creative way to teach your kids smart money management skills involves utilizing games. Monopoly, for example, introduces children to a variety of concepts including budgeting, negotiations, debt, needing to have cash reserves for future endeavors, and planning for unexpected expenses.
Without realizing, kids are learning while having fun. Allow them to make mistakes but have them think things over afterward. Help kids come to the intended conclusion. What would they have done differently? How difficult was it to earn money? How would savings have helped them in critical times?
It should come as no surprise that a great way to learn is by doing. For this reason, allowing your kids to participate in the decision-making process and following through with an action can be beneficial.
Establish a budget and have kids help with creating shopping lists, clipping coupons, and looking for deals. Do this while shopping for groceries, clothing, or the like. For ideas, check out this detailed guide on how to involve your child in Back to School Shopping and Budgeting.
Make a Trip to the Credit Union
Aim to teach your kids the benefit of saving. When appropriate, consider opening their first savings account to allow them to manage the account under your watch. Encourage kids to “pay themselves first” when they receive money, make deposits regularly, and give their balance time to grow.
Fortunately, many financial institutions take it upon themselves to make the process fun and rewarding for all. At A+FCU, for instance, there are special savings accounts for youth that encourage kids to save by having special resources, prizes, and events available to them.
Set the Example
As early as age 5, children begin to form their own money attitudes that influence behavior. Kids who are able to connect saving to increased gratification will be more cautious when spending compared to a child who has yet to discern that relationship a University of Michigan study suggests.
Though peers, the media, and a variety of sources influence children, parents can play a large role in shaping money attitudes. Lead by example and help kids understand the rationale behind why you do what you do.
Visit aplusfcu.org/balance to gain access to free resources covering a wide variety of topics, including Teens and Money.