Finance is Fun: Ways to Teach Kids About Money!

The one practical area of life that doesn’t seem to get enough attention in schools is the world of personal finance. Teaching these responsibilities falls largely on parents, but, fortunately, there some things you can do to help your child learn valuable lessons as they grow.
Teaching Toddlers the Value of Money
The first step in teaching about personal finance is to instill the concept of money in your child. There are a number of ways to do this that can make learning fun for your child. One way is to create a store in your home. Collect your child’s toys and label them with prices. Next, give your child some money to go shopping, while you play the part of the cashier. This will help your toddler learn the value of things and that they can only have what they can afford.
Allowance Can Be an Educational Tool
Whether you pay out allowance regularly or only for doing extra chores, this presents an opportunity to teach your older child about finance, using their own earnings. Since they have worked to earn this money, they already hold it in greater value. Now is the time to teach them that their money can’t all be saved as soon as it’s earned. Make them contribute a percentage of their earnings to a savings fund, while letting them keep the rest to spend as they will. This will teach them to budget their money and, if you let them help to keep track of how much is being accumulated, it will also show them the value of maintaining a savings account.
Tutoring Your Teen in Real Personal Finance
As your child reaches his or her teens, it’s time to step up your game a bit. First, it’s a good idea to require them to get a job of their own and force them to pay for some of their own things. For instance, make them pay their own car insurance or tell them they have to pay a weekly rent. You can charge just a small amount, which you will explain goes into their savings account to help pay for college, a new vehicle, or their first apartment. This is also a good time to teach them about investing. By mock investing in stocks and watching how those stocks perform each week together, your teenager will learn about the markets.
By making it a game for younger children and teaching older teens how to handle their own money, your child will hold a better appreciation for finance. Being better prepared will prevent them from making foolish financial mistakes that could haunt them for much of their lives.