This article will help every parent to teach their Kids how to share,save and spend money effectively.
During the Global Money Week this year I was with a set of Nursery 2 pupils to discuss a subject I love to talk about. The first question I asked them was “What do you do with money?” and all the kids shouted “spend”. When kids have money their preference may be to spend it all on toys, gadgets, candy and whatever else looks interesting at the moment. This is supported by the many parents who unreservedly (and innocently) ask, “What are you going to buy?” when their children receive gifts and other money. While there is nothing wrong with finding out how your child wants to spend his or her money, it’s only one part of the equation. Rather than focusing solely on spending, we can help our kids now and in the long-term by giving attention to sharing and saving as well. At a tender age they may not be able to understand anything about investing but that can come at a later stage.
It is critical that your child understands there are more options for money than spending. An excellent idea is to introduce them to a system that helps them figure out what to do with their money that will help them set up financially responsible habits. Remind your child that we all have to make choices with our money and the three broad choices available are to:
• Share – donate money to help people and the environment
• Spend – purchase goods and services to satisfy needs and wants
• Save – set aside money for future needs and wants
The percentage allocated to each category is up to you and your child, and may depend on what expenses you expect your child to cover out of his or her money. For example, if your child is expected to pay for all of his toys and treats except at birthdays and holidays, you may aim for a higher spending percentage. If your child pays for very few things, a higher percentage for saving may be appropriate. You might want to discuss and demonstrate how you share, save and spend. While you don’t have to give dollar amounts, you might say something like, “Out of each paycheck, I spend 50% on our family’s needs and wants, put away 10% for savings, and share 10% to help others.
Suitable percentages for kids might be different from yours since your financial responsibilities and budgets are very different. Kids might aim for something like:
• 30% for sharing
• 30% for saving
• 40% for spending
There are a number of systems your child can use to keep track of his or her money. He can use 3 jars labelled “Share”, “Save” and “Spend”; or use three envelopes labelled “Share”, “Save” and “Spend” with all of them kept in one larger envelope; or use piggy banks that are divided into three sections or even 3 different piggy banks.
As your child works with this he or she will automatically think of every amount he or she earns in terms of sharing, saving and spending (and eventually investing). As your child goes along the percentages may have to be adjusted periodically to reflect your child’s current earnings, financial obligations and short-term and long-term goals. That is how to help your child become a financially responsible person.
Gbonjubola Sanni – she is a Public Speaker and Conference teacher who is passionate about women’s interests, a financial literacy advocate for children who has authored two books on financial literacy for kids. Director of Eadda Kids Enterprises.