15 Ways to Teach Kids About Finances

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Use regular shopping trips as opportunities to teach children the value of money. Going to the grocery store is often a child's first spending experience. About a third of our take-home pay is spent on grocery and household items. Spending smarter at the grocery store (using coupons, shopping sales, comparing unit prices) can save more than $1,800 a year for a family of four. To help young people understand this lesson, demonstrate how to plan economical meals, avoid waste, and use leftovers efficiently. When you take children to other kinds of stores, explain how to plan purchases in advance and make unit-price comparisons. Show them how to check for value, quality, repairability, warranty, and other consumer concerns. Spending money can be fun and very productive when spending is well-planned. Unplanned spending, as a rule, usually results in 20-30 percent of our money being wasted because we obtain poor value with our purchases.

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  • kierah

    One method my friends have used with their young children is to teach the difference between “needs” and “wants.” Before these kids even understand money, they understand that Mommy and Daddy will handle the needs, but when we just want something it has to be earned. Even a 5 year old can understand this and it is something that will be used in budgeting throughout financial life.

  • Tia

    If my kids lost or damaged something that we bought them, we replace it but at cost to the kids-they forgo their allowance for whatever the cost of the item was. For instance, my daughter lost a pair of running shoes that I bought specifically for her to run on the cross country team. They cost $130; she receives $10 per week in allowance. So, I repurchased the shoes but it took her 13 weeks before she could receive her allowance again. Also, when they have gotten gifts in the form of money, I have withheld a portion to cover things like lost glasses. Money is important and you can never start too early with that lesson and the lesson of being responsible and respectful of other people’s money.

  • http://www.facebook.com/bob.pierson2 Bob Pierson

    Great article. Grew up knowing how to use money, responsible with money and if u borrowed, it would cost… blah blah blah. However, I really know very little. These reoccurring national economic challenges are complicated and need understanding far greater than being a consumer. Question is: what, when and how do you teach about our resource management system ? And what morels and ethics do u instill?

  • Tha Real Hamia

    Re: #7: But where do you get this 6% interest tho?? o_O I haven’t seen such since the 90′s

  • Jenifer

    Why do we have to click all the dame pages? Just put the info out and stop worrying about hits to your page. ugh!