One of the biggest things we all want to instill in our children so they grow into successful adults is a feeling of good money management. There are so many ways to do this and what tactics you use will be determined on what your child’s age or maturity level is.
Teaching your kids about good money management
Preschool to age 6 is a good time to start introducing some money management ideas. While it is hard to instill true ideas about saving vs. spending to a little person who very much just sees moment to moment, you can show them by example. For instance, saying things like, “Momma needs to put this back because she doesn’t need it (when you realize you are about to overspend” is a good way to verbalize that you are watching your spending habits.
Another way you can get your young child to grow into frugality is to have a money jar that you place coins in. Allow them to put the coins in the jar for you and tell them when it reaches a certain level, you will decide together what to do with it.
Young children are also great helpers if you do couponing. They can help you sort, cut (in the later years such as 5 or 6) and stack coupons. If you take them to the store with you, have them pick out the items in the picture on the coupon. See Where to find Coupons in Canada
Once you get into elementary through preteen years, you can really start to drive frugality home by giving them ways to understand saving, spending and investing money in responsible manners.
Older children can get bank accounts that have high savings yield percentages. You can ask them to track their money in their account and watch it grow with deposits. This is also a great time to start with an allowance.
In early elementary, take the same jar that you have been saving coins in and have them count coins. This not only helps with allowing them to see why saving is so important and how quickly it can add up but also helps them with some basic math skills.
Preteens can help you with your couponing trips by helping you calculate savings, price matching with ads and helping you decide if something is a good buy or not by comparing prices. When they see how much you can save with coupons, it is likely they will continue this through adulthood. See How to Create a Price Book, and Canada Stores that Price Match List
As a child enters young adulthood, they may desire to get jobs and graduate from the allowance. This is a great way to allow them to earn some of their own money, but it is vital that you spend some time talking about it and what it will mean. Will they be saving for something they want? Will they be paying for some of their own wants, now? How about their own needs? Every family is different, but a frank discussion about how holding a job can affect grades and how that can’t be allowed is important.10 Ways to Build an Emergency Fund