We all want our kids to learn and grow to be financially stable and caring adults. It is our job as parents to teach our kids how to succeed in this world and we want to do it in a way that will stick for a lifetime. Here are 10 tips for teaching your child to spend, save, and give that will stick with them as they grow:
10 Tips for Teaching Your Child to Spend, Save, and Give
- Teach through Example: The best way you can teach your child about spending, saving, and giving is to teach through example. Your child watches what you do and ultimately learns the most through example. So, be careful what you teach them through your actions.
- Save Money in a Jar: Teach your kids to save by saving money in a family jar. Anytime you or anyone in the house has spare change, drop it in the jar and watch it add up. Count your savings with your kids when the jar fills up, and teach them how to go to a bank and put it in a savings account.
- Give to Homeless: Though you may not always think about it, a simple way to show your kids to be giving is to stop by the homeless shelter and give your time, money, or donations to those in need. Bring your child along so they can see what giving is all about.
- Take Presents to a Family on the Holidays: Another way to get your kids in the giving spirit is to have them choose one of their presents from under the tree to give to other kids who won’t be getting any presents. Each year have your child choose a present before it is opened and take to a family that needs it. They may not like this at first, but as the years go on, they will learn to appreciate what they have, and feel the joy of giving to others.
- Help Your Kids Save for what they Want: We all want to get our children whatever their little heart’s desire, but teaching them to save for what they want is a life-long lesson. As your child gets older, give an allowance for chores so they can start saving what they get. You can, also, let them shovel snow or do yard work for neighbors to teach responsibility and saving at the same time.
- Let them Help with Store Lists: Without lists, it is easy to spend more than you want to. Have your child help you with store lists and making a budget for each trip. If you only have $100 to spend, make sure you only spend $100. This will teach your child how to plan ahead and budget as they get older.
- Talk about Money: Talk about money with your kids. Financial problems don’t need to be talked about in depth, but it is important for your child to learn from your mistake and see how you are fixing it. If you don’t have money problems, talk about the importance of saving first and planning for big purchases. The more you talk about it, the more it will sink in.
- Spend Money Wisely: Don’t go out and spend a bonus on a bunch of frivolous items. Teach your kids to put money back in case something happens in the future, to pay off bills early, and only buy what they need. Spending your money wisely will teach your kids to spend their money wisely as well.
- Do Things for Others: If you see a neighbor struggling to rake their leaves or shovel the snow, grab your child and go out and help. As you do things for others and include your child in helping you, your child will learn to be caring and giving.
- Save for Big Purchases: Going on a trip and building experiences are part of life. Life shouldn’t just be all work and no play. Teach your kids to save for these big purchases or enjoyments. Set a plan to go on a trip or buy a new TV and save until you can afford it. This will teach your kids not to impulse buy.
Life skills can come in the everyday things that you do. It doesn’t have to be a long drawn out lesson. Your kids will learn by watching what you do and working alongside you. Keep them involved and informed.