Thursday, July 14, 2016

Teaching Kids To Be Money Smart

Lately, we have felt the need to teach the girls a little bit about earning, saving and spending money. Growing up I had the chance to earn a little money here and there for doing jobs around the house that weren't my chores.  It wasn't much but it was enough to help me learn about being money smart. We decided that this was something we felt was important for our kids to learn in life, so we started looking for good ways to teach kids about it.

After talking about it, and reading a lot of Dave Ramsey and talking about it some more, we decided the best way to teach our kids how to be money smart was kind of like how my parents taught me to be money smart.  So last night we set the girls down and started to talk to them about money on their level.  We didn't go into stocks and savings and different bank accounts and all of that yet because they are a little young, we feel, to understand all of that. Instead, we told them what the difference between a job and a chore is: A chore is something you are expected to do. It's more of an everyday thing like cleaning your room or putting your clothes and toys away. A job is something that will be a little more challenging for them. It's a "special job" that mom or dad says they can do to earn a little money, like helping pick apricots or wiping the walls down in the upstairs rooms, that kind of thing.

Then we let them decorate jars with holes in the top to use as their piggy banks (we were going to let them go find some at the store but we couldn't find a store that had any that we thought were a decent price and good quality, so the jars work just fine for their age). As they put stickers on their jars, we talked about how they can save up their money to buy something that they want, like a toy at the store.

Starting kids young on being money smart is a great idea because it will become more of a habit for them to save money. It's also teaching them to work hard for things that they want. It's not just being handed to them. They learn to appreciate the things they have more when they learn to work for them.  I also love it because having them help with things around the house for money is an incentive for them, and helps mark of my to-do list a little easier.

As they get older their jobs will change and become a little more challenging, and they will have more chores added to their list.  Some of their chores right now are things like:

- Picking up their toys when they are done playing
- Help put clothes away after laundry is done.
- Put dirty clothes in the clothes basket instead of on the floor.
- Make beds
- Bring dishes over to the sink after dinner.
- Help set the table.

Some of their jobs are:

- Wiping down the baseboards.
- Cleaning window seals
- Picking apricots
- Raking leaves
- Helping in the Garden
- Washing the big mirror that is in our dining area (I didn't put it there and it wouldn't be there if I could take it down without breaking the wall.)

The list of jobs will grow and change as our family grows and changes. You shouldn't make these jobs too hard for their age, that will only discourage them. Help when they need help, but let them figure it out as much as they can. The girls are really excited about being able to save up some money for things they have been eyeing at the store (and J says she wants to save up her money to go to Disneyland...we'll see how that goes).

On a completely different note, I went running when the girls went to bed last night. I made it 2 1/2 miles!! And my knee didn't bother me as much as it has been so it felt really good to go that far.  I still made sure to ice it afterward, while I read my book, though, to help prevent further injury. I'll be getting new shoes soon, but not quite yet.

Did you have jobs to earn money growing up or did you have an allowance?

What was your favorite chore as a kid?
  I liked dusting and mowing the lawn the most. 

1 comment:

  1. I think this is great and something I need to do with my boys. I love the idea of chores vs. jobs. Thanks for the great ideas!!