Kids & Money

Teach Your Kids About Money – Money and Store System

NOTE: This method can work for children beginning at around age 3 – and can work through early teen years.

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There are two key influences in a child’s life when it comes to money:

  1. Their parents
  2. The world around them

Who is more likely to help children have a healthy relationship with money? Ideally, it would be the parents!

Here’s a way to help your child understand how to use money and to make healthy choices with it: Create a Money and Store System

Money and Store System

  1. Create your own money (call it a fun name like Mommy Bucks or Reward Dollars) – Here’s some money I’ve made to help you (DOWNLOAD HERE)
  2. Establish a system where your child can earn this money
  3. Purchase 3 or 4 items you know your child would enjoy and place it in a “store” at your home
  4. Assign a value to each item
  5. Watch the system work – and use the experience to create “teachable moments” where you can have incredible conversations with your child about money.

Consider a parent with a 4 year old boy.

The parents create a currency called “Super Duper Money” (SDM for short). To earn this money, their child must complete special age-appropriate tasks around the house such as:

  • “Pick up pine cones out of the yard”
  • “Feed and water the cat daily”

A value of $1 SDM can be earned each week for each key task.

The store has 4 items in it – with varying prices to create short, medium, and longer term goals:

  • Gummy Worms (Price: $2 SDM)
  • Give food to the Hungry (Price: $4 SDM)
  • Legos (Price: $8 SDM)
  • Big Fire Truck (Price: $16 SDM)

As the child performs the tasks and earns SDMs, they can make a purchase from the store.

It’s that simple, and it allows the parent control the conversation. Imagine the incredible teachable moments that can happen:

  1. Saving  As they save money, they can accomplish more.
  2. Giving  They can learn to sacrifice a gift for themselves to serve those in great need. There’s NOTHING like seeing your child be generous!
  3. Delayed Gratification  The importance of saying “no” right now, so we can say “yes” to something more important later.
  4. It is a good thing to work!  I want my child to learn the value of working.

This post is part of a Kids & Money Series here at the wildly popular JosephSangl.com. Click HERE to read all of the posts in the series.

10 Things Parents Should Teach Their Children About Money

All parents want their children to succeed in life. I’m regularly asked, “How do I teach my children about money?” This is a great question, but we should start with another question: “What should I teach my children about money?” Once we determine the “what,” then we can focus on strategies for “how” to teach them.

Here are some key things every parent should teach their children about money.

10 Things Parents Should Teach Their Children About Money

  1. Your dreams should drive your money decisions.  Every great accomplishment began with a dream. Money will flow to a great idea and plan. Let your dreams influence the way you manage your money.
  2. Money will go farther if you prepare and follow a budget.  A budget ensures you generate maximum impact with all of your money.
  3. Be very cautious with debt.  Debt has led to the destruction of many people. Demonstrate how debt can help achieve dreams or produce income and net worth. Share how it has led to enormous stress and financial disaster.
  4. Investing allows you to capture the power of compound interest.  Compound interest has allowed many people to fund their wildest dreams. It allows the combination of diligence, time, and money to yield a tremendous harvest.
  5. The importance of insurance.  Insurance allows you to transfer risk thereby preventing a catastrophe from destroying everything you’ve worked to build up.
  6. Giving is living. There’s nothing more satisfying than offering a hand up to someone who can benefit greatly from such a gesture.
  7. Financial margin reduces stress.  Living life “on the edge” with zero savings is for the birds. Share how a simple decision to keep some money in an emergency savings account can prevent life events (like car breakdowns, appliance failures, or emergency home repairs) from causing tremendous financial pain.
  8. A financial education is just as important as your school education. You can have more degrees than a thermometer and still be broke. Be certain to gain a financial education while receiving your professional education.
  9. Every decision is not purely a financial decision. There are times you will have to make decisions because it is “the right thing to do” even though it might not make financial sense. Be certain to allow your core values and beliefs to drive your decisions.
  10. You can either pay now and play later or you can play now and pay later. And it usually is much more painful to pay later!

Anything you would add to this list? Join the conversation on the I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. Facebook Page.

10 Things Kids Wish Their Parents Knew About Money

We’ve been blessed to serve millions of people through this blog, our live events, and the free tools we offer. Along the way, I’ve had countless conversations with people about money and its impact on relationships – both positive and negative. Here’s what I know about every person I’ve been able to serve – all of them once were children. They’ve shared many things with me that began with the statement, “I wish I had known this when I was younger …”

So I decided to put together a list of things kids wished their parents knew about money.

10 Things Kids Wish Their Parents Knew About Money

  1. I don’t know about money. Please teach me.  The schools aren’t teaching me much about money. You will be my primary educator on “all things money.”
  2. I’d rather have your time and attention than more stuff.  I understand that you have to work, but I really love you and want to spend quality time with you.
  3. I’m watching how you manage your money.  I see how you respond to financial challenges. I hear how you talk about money.
  4. Later in life, I’ll tell my friends and children about how you managed your money.  I will use it in examples as I teach my children.
  5. I’m not as interested in receiving an inheritance as I am in seeing you enjoy the fruit of your year’s of effort and sacrifice. One day I will clearly recognize how hard you have worked to establish financial margin and a nest-egg. I want to see you enjoy it and continue to pursue your hopes and dreams.
  6. I know when you’ve sacrificed to provide me with something special. I’ll never forget the toy you sacrificed to buy for me. When you sold something you held dear to send me to camp, I noticed it.
  7. I hear how you talk about wealthy & poor people. I will gain much of my world-view from you. If you view wealthy people as “greedy,” I’ll probably pick that belief up too. If you view poor people as “deserving” of their position in life, I’ll probably repeat it to others. On the flip side, if you view it as a privilege to help the poor and respect those who have managed to build wealth, I’ll do the same.
  8. If you stress about money, I feel it. I may not be able to completely identify what is wrong, but I will know it is related to money. I’ll watch to see how you react to the situation and the attitude you maintain throughout the financial challenge.
  9. It’s okay to say “no” to me when I ask for something.  I won’t like it at the time, but I’m really testing boundaries. I will learn that it is indeed possible to survive without the item.
  10. I know if you are selfish or generous.  Generosity and selfishness are both contagious. I’ll model your behavior.

Anything you would add to this list? I invite you to share your thoughts on our I Was Broke. Now I’m Not. Facebook Page.

Teach Your Child To Be Generous

I’m not sure anything moves my heart like watching my children be generous. Whether it is sharing a toy with their friend or deciding to play the other person’s choice of game, it moves me!

But we must be honest with ourselves: Generosity is not natural behavior. Among our first words are the dreaded “No!” and “Mine!” along with precise timing to exact maximum frustration in the lives of our parents and siblings.

Here are three practical steps any parent can take to help their child develop the gift of generosity:

  1. Live it in your own life!  Children imitate their parent’s behavior – both desired and undesired! This is THE KEY to developing generosity within your children – be a living example of it. Invite your children to participate in your generous actions – giving to your church, volunteering to clean up your favorite hiking trail, attending a charity fashion show, and buying Christmas gifts for a family facing a tough financial situation are just a few examples. Let them be a part of it!
  2. Be grateful – and say so in front of your children.  Use words of a thankful nature. Choose not to say statements that start with, “When I get … I will be happy then.” Have a roof over your head? Be thankful you are not in the rain! Have heat in the winter and AC in the summer? Express out loud just how thankful you are for it! Does your car get you from point A to point B? Give the car a name and be thankful! Say, “Well, old Betsy is humming right along, and I’m grateful I don’t have to walk to town!”
  3. Make giving part of their money management system.  Every single time your child receives money (birthday, holiday, graduation, work, etc), require them to prepare a budget for every single dollar prior to touching any of it! Ensure the planning goes in this order: (A) Give, (B) Save, (C) Invest, (D) Spend – Let them choose (with your guidance, of course) who the money will be given to.

Gratefulness can take hold of your heart and literally transform your entire worldview. It’s one of the greatest gifts my parents could have ever instilled into me!

I’m blessed.

I’m so grateful.

NOTE: This post was written as part of the “Kids & Money” series here at the wildly popular JosephSangl.com! Click HERE to access all of the tips in this series.

Teach Children The Value of Work

In my book, Oxen, I share about two different ways to produce income:

  1. Type 1 is “Work = Get Paid” || Don’t Work = Don’t Get Paid”
  2. Type 2 is “Get paid whether or not you are working”

These two types of income production are also commonly referred to as “Aggressive” (Type 1) and “Passive” (Type 2) streams of income.

While we all aspire to receive as much income as possible from Type 2 sources, most people start their financial journey with only Type 1 income at their disposal. I recommend teaching children this principle as soon as possible so they do not get afflicted with “magic money tree syndrome” where they believe money just magically appears upon command.

You can do this even when a child is 3 or 4 years old by instituting a “chore chart.” This is a chart where you can assign specific tasks to the child, and they can receive payment upon successful completion. Basic tasks can be assigned at this age including emptying little trash cans into the big trash can, feeding the cat or puppy, and cleaning their room. All of these tasks will, of course, require parental “assistance” at this age, but you are incentivizing appropriate behavior and teaching the Type 1 Income principle!

Conduct a weekly review of the chart with the child. Have them “self-grade” their performance with each chore. Make payments accordingly.

Key Points To Consider:

  • Consider having a picture of their next desired purchase posted next to the chore chart to help keep the child focused on “why” they are doing this.
  • I really like chore charts that also include “fines” for obstinate and ridiculous behavior (like throwing themselves onto the floor in a tantrum or open and outrageous disobedience).

Key steps to implement your chore chart:

  1. Establish age appropriate chores
  2. Assign a monetary value for each chore
  3. Have the child “self-grade” performance each week
  4. Have the child “self-grade” regarding “fines” that should be administered
  5. Make payments accordingly

You will see your children learn how great it is to work and be productive and that good financial things can happen as a result!

Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace, Jr. is a terrific resource that includes a dry-erase chore cart and even includes envelopes for giving, saving, and spending! We’ve used this to help our children learn these principles. HERE IS AN AMAZON.COM LINK to that resource.

NOTE: This post was written as part of the “Kids & Money” series here at the wildly popular JosephSangl.com! Click HERE to access all of the tips in this series.