Be polite, wash your hands, do your homework. There are countless norms and values that parents want to instill in their children. What should certainly not be missing on the list is a solid financial education. However, this is how you teach your children the value of money.
Anyone who learns to deal with money consciously at a young age makes better financial decisions as an adult. Experts agree on this, but how do you do that concretely as a parent? What are the do’s and don’ts with young children, and what do teenagers learn the most from?
1. Pocket money
Primary school is a good age to give children a weekly amount. For example, start with one dollar per week. Explain to children that they could already buy something with that money, but that it is essential to save money for when they really want something.
In this way, they immediately feel some responsibility, and they learn that money is actually worth something. A savings goal can be very interesting in that regard. Suppose a child dreams of a $30 toy. Then follow the process together of how long your child has to save before buying the coveted item.
2. How much is a dollar worth?
A handy setting for explaining money is the supermarket. Go over with certain products whether they cost more or less than that dollar pocket money. Your child will learn that everything has its value and that certain products cost more or less than others.
Everything in the supermarket is done with a payment card these days, so that can seem quite abstract to a young child. A next and more visual step is that you let your child pay with cash at the bakery or butcher.
At least as interesting and great is learning while playing. With a cash register and toy money, a toy shop at home is an important learning experience for everyday life. Play along as a parent. When ‘shopping’ you can discuss prices, pay and receive change. Party games such as Monopoly with fictitious money are also both great and financially instructive.
A teenager at home? They can already have you do extra chores for a fee. Mow the lawn, vacuum, wash the car and remove weeds. These are just a few tasks that a teenager can easily help with. Reward your child for the chores that require the most effort.
In this way, they learn that you have to work to earn money. The apple of your eye will no doubt think twice about spending that hard-earned cash. Please note that you are not going to pay your child a wage for everything.
2. Student job
The older teenagers can look forward to a holiday job. Encourage your child to start earning money outside the home as well. By doing a student job, a larger sum will come to your child in one go. Guide him or her in the possible use of the money: from buying a nice reward for which they have worked hard to setting aside a sum for later.
3. Talk about money
Teenagers often have no idea what life costs. We can’t blame them if no one tells them anything. Money doesn’t have to be a taboo. Have your teen check the bills and bills for groceries, utilities, and even the annual vacation on a regular basis.
If you have to save as a family, explain to a teenager why it’s necessary. As a parent, you have an exemplary role in many areas. Money is certainly one of them.