*Information for this post is sourced from Genworth Financial in partnership with the SheHeard Influencer Network. All opinions expressed and ideas are 100%*
It’s so important to teach your kids about money and it’s even more important to start from an early age. For young children I truly believe that the best way to learn is by having fun!
Mason just turned 3 and after he spent $18 dollars in apps on my Kindle one morning while I was sleeping I decided that we *needed* to teach him about money and the value of a dollar. And before you start side eyeing me about why my child was up playing and I was sleeping, he sleeps with me and the night before I had been reading in bed so the Kindle was in the bed and when he woke up he saw it, grabbed it and started playing quietly in the bed.
As I was saying:
1. Get Them a Piggy Bank—Mason loves putting coins in his piggy bank. Making sure they have one is the perfect first step in teaching kids about money! The primary job of the piggy bank is keeping the money safe and saving the money for something special.
2. Give them a set amount of money to spend—Bring your child to the grocery store or on another shopping trip with you and give them a certain amount of money to spend. Let them pick out things they want within the confines of their budget.
3. Buy Play Money—You can get play money pretty much anywhere so stock up and help your child learn about the value of dollar while also rewarding their good behavior. When they do something good ”pay them” with the fake money, because it’s fake money you can do this all day long. When they misbehave you can take some money away. At the end of the week allow them to “purchase” something from some toys/books/activities you’ve purchased (Target Dollar Spot and the Dollar Tree Store are great to find things). Label the items with a dollar amount and when they decide what they want collect the money again.
Another idea is giving them a certain amount of money to spend per day on electronics for example. You can give them five $1 bills that equal 30 minutes of Electronic/TV time. This will help limit the time they spend watching tv/playing with electronics and show them the value of money.
4. Have a Garage Sale/Sell Lemonade—Take advantage of the nice weather and have a garage sale or set up a Lemonade Stand. With the garage sale you can let them pick which toys they want to get rid of to keep them involved. Any money they earned can either be put in their piggy bank for something extra special or you can take them out and get them a little something with it! This would also be a great way to incorporate fun idea #2.
5. Turn their coins into dollars—Mason is still grasping the concept that money has different values, that 5 pennies isn’t more than 1 dime. One way we’re going to try and help him understand this is by bringing him to a coin machine. This helps them visualize that the coins when added all together can have a higher value and that they’re worth something. And the look on their face when they turn in coins and get CASH instead is going to be awesome.
You can do this same idea using fake dollars and fake coins at home.
Teaching your kids about money now will be beneficial in the long run to both you and your children. Teaching them about the value of a dollar will make it easier for them to plan for their financial future and set them up for financial stability as they grow older.
And let’s be real here, it’s also going to be beneficial to you because one day you’re going to be old and you may need a care provider and depending on where you live, that’s not exactly cheap. Which you can see from this map by Genworth Financial.
And hopefully after providing care for them for so many years and making learning about money fun you’ll end up in one of their beatuiful guest houses they were able to build because of all the Lemonade Stand money they saved instead of a nursing home! 😉