Sunday, October 11, 2009

Money habits:

can be hard to teach to children. I have been trying for almost the last 8 yrs. Yup, that means since my son was born. Ok, maybe not quite that early but close. As soon as he could understand what money was we have made an attempt to teach him its hard to come by. Does that mean that my kids don’t act out in the store when you tell them no?? I wish! However, we don’t hide our money issues from them. Some may think this is wrong, but its the only way we can make them understand we can’t afford things. Like when we save to go somewhere special they know it took us a bit to do that. Or when Cub Scouts offers a few activities in one month. We look at the prices figure out the cost, and tell Hunter he has to choose which one would mean more to him. Of course he is disappointed, but he knows that we can’t afford them all. By letting him choose we know he understands this.
My children save their mom in their piggy banks. Now this is hard for them, because they don’t get a lot of money. I’m not a believer in paying my kids to do chores. They do them cause they know that is how we help out as a family. So money is not something they come by often. They get it from family for birthdays, and holidays, or in Hunter’s case when he looses a tooth, and sometimes they find change on the floor, or someone will hand them some. The first thing they do is say thank you and put in the piggy bank.
Hunter has been saving his money for a year now. Yup, a whole year… and no its not a lot. After a year he just got up to $20 and he was able to go to the store and pick out what he wanted. Now for him, this was a tough year. Many times he came across books, games, Lego sets, cards, and various items he wanted. However, we kept reminding him that once the money was gone, he could not get it back. He needed to make sure this is what he wanted to buy. After thinking about it for the past month, he settled on the Batman Lego Game for the Wii! He went to Target on Friday after school and bought it. He was so proud of himself, as was I. I knew it would mean more to him cause he bought it with his own money. He is now trying to decide what he wants to save up for next! My kids only know of the Cash system… we do not use credit cards. So they get that you have to have the money present to buy it. That makes a big difference in their thinking… How do you teach your kids about money?

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