You want to give your children the world. I get that. But sadly, that isn’t possible. Money doesn’t grow on trees, and eventually, your children need to learn that. You need to help your children learn about money.
Now, I know this is a WAHM Lifestyle blog, but that M stands for something important. It’s stands for “mom.” You’re a mom before a business owner, and that means you have children who need you. They need to learn from you.
While I’m not homeschooling at the moment, I am still teaching my children plenty of lessons. It’s never too early to help them learn about money. My elder daughter is getting really good at understanding that to buy things we need the right amount of pennies. Her sister isn’t too far behind her.
Sure, we have a few moments of disappointment, but that’s normal. We’re all disappointed when we can’t afford something. But I like to teach my children that while they can’t have it now, they can start to save up. Here’s how I’m helping my children learn about money.
Let them know how much they have to spend
When we go to the shops, I tell my children the amount they have to spend. This is often the case when it’s birthday money to spend. They know that they can spend up to that amount.
So, they need to look at the price tags and make decisions. If the prices go over the amount they have, they know that they need to keep saving. They then need to decide whether they want to save or whether they want to look at something else.
When they want to look at something else, they may find that they end up with money left over. This is where they learn that they can spend the leftover money or they can choose to put it towards their savings.
This is the part my elder daughter is getting really good at. She’ll look through her toy options and make decisions. She’s had conversations with me, where she knows that she can only buy one of two items and she asks which one would be better value for the money she has.
I think this is an important lesson. She’s learning that she can’t just have everything that she wants. She has to work with the limitations available. Instead of FOMO (fear of missing out), she learns about saving and making the best decisions for her at the time.
The Everything Kids’ Money Book: Earn it, save it, and watch it grow! (Everything® Kids)
Encourage them to save money
I always encourage them to save money. When they get birthday and Christmas money, I encourage to put half of that money into a savings account. They can save up for something big that they want or they can just keep saving for the future.
My children know that we, as their parents, also save up each month. We’re saving for a deposit on a house and also have an emergency fund set aside. They get to see that, and I’ll explain more about that in a moment.
One thing that I never did was save for the future. I knew that I had to save for something that I wanted, but I didn’t put money away for long-term savings and I wish I did. So, that’s why I want my children to learn about money and savings.
Encourage math problems that help them learn about money
Part of my elder daughter’s math learning involves money. They’ll be problems like “Kevin has 10 pennies and Kacey has 11 pennies. How many do they have if they put their pennies together?”
These types of problems teach her math, but they also keep money in the forefront. It reminds my daughter that she can save up.
I’ll also do problems with coins. It’s a great way to visually teach children. Sure, I’m not homeschooling, but I often have to find pennies for the weekly popcorn at school or for milk money. My elder daughter is able to count the pennies with me so we can make sure she has enough.
My daughters also have their own piggy banks for loose change. I often find them counting their pennies.
Look at some of the bank accounts with me
As I said, my daughters get to see the savings. I sometimes sit them down with the bank accounts so they can see the money that’s in them. The exact amounts don’t mean much to them at the moment, but they get to see that some money is borrowed (we used credit cards for cash flow but always pay them off each month) and they see some money is in savings for the future.
This is a great chance for them to learn about money and finances. They see me moving money around to clear off the credit cards each month. They see me doing the math to make sure the right money goes to the right place and see me handling the savings.
I may have to change this as they get older, but I don’t believe in shadowing them from our earnings as a family. After all, money is family money. The problem we may have is if they see that we have a set amount of money and don’t understand why we’re not spending it on them. That is something I’ll play by ear as they get older.
As they do get older, I’ll get them to help me with my taxes, though. Even if it’s just doing the receipts for me, this is part of money that they need to learn for the future.
You’ll be amazed by the way children can learn about money. In fact, they have the ability to pick up so much from everyday life. It’s time to teach them about money so they’re ready for the future.