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Introducing the Concept of Money Early


As a mum to a newborn and an often mischievous toddler, I have quickly realised how expensive it is to raise your favourite little people, especially now that my oldest has found his voice. Not only is he into everything but he also wants everything too! And, although it’s difficult to explain the value of money to a toddler, I am really keen to teach my little boy the age-old saying of ‘money doesn’t grow on trees.’ 

After all, as a mum, role model and educator, they do say that the sooner you instil good money values into your children, the more likely they are to adopt responsible attitudes towards money in their older years. And I discovered that there’s lots of ways that you can teach your little ones the value of money in a fun and engaging way, so that they understand that they can’t always have what they want! Yes, I know what you’re thinking, that’s easier said than done when your little ones are having a full on tantrum in a supermarket aisle, but I’ve already started using some of the approaches I discovered, and found that they really do work! Here’s what I found out, I hope you find them helpful...

Playtime

Playtime can be both fun and educational. It’s also a great way of introducing your little ones to the concept of money, and that it doesn’t miraculously appear from thin air. Oh, how I wish that were the case!
And there’s lots of ways to introduce exciting games into everyday play that will help to shape your children’s attitudes and behaviours towards money. For example, when we play shops, I have been helping Ethan to count out how much each item costs before showing him that, to able to take the items home, he needs to pay the cashier (in this case, me!) first. And if he doesn’t have enough for everything he wants, some of the items have to go back on the shelf. Introducing other real life situations into playtime such as paying for a bill in a restaurant, or buying a toy in a toyshop also really helps...and we have lots of fun too!

Introducing credit to your little one

This is quite a way off for me but I do recognise the importance of introducing my children to credit, as it will have a huge impact on the financial choices that they make in the future. After all, we all know how easy it is at 18 to make wrong financial decisions, which then affects your credit rating in years to come.

One of my friends was telling me a great way of addressing credit with your older kids. She showed her 16 year-old her Experian Credit Score online and went through it all with her. Having the knowledge and understanding about how credit works at such an early age should help your kids to make wise financial choices as they grow older.


Pocket money

Although Ethan is still a little too young to understand the concept of pocket money just yet, from the age of five, I do plan to give him money each week providing he is a good boy, and completes a simple chore each week to teach him the importance of earning money.
Pocket money is also a great way of teaching your children that if they want something, they have to save for it. This comes in particularly handy when they reach those teenage years when they want the latest gadgets, trainers and clothing. Of course, only give them what you can afford. I know so many families who feel pressured into giving their children more than they can afford to, when really the smallest amount can go a long way to teaching your kids the importance of saving, managing and responsible spending.



 


2 comments

  1. Love this post Alex. Although it is a while away for me yet, teaching the importance of money to Ailsa is something I really want to do. I didn't have that growing up and my mum was always a spend every penny you have kind of person. It wasn't until I went to Uni and dealt with my own money that I learned how to budget and save. I guess saving for a wedding helped too. Hopefully we can teach Ailsa this important life lesson well enough so she makes good decisions for herself.

    Azaria
    Being Mrs Lynch

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  2. Great post Alex. I try my best to learn my kids about money. I haven't done so great in learning them the past few weeks. But in the past I have done pocket money and played games with them which was also educational. I am wanting to buy some board games for Christmas that may help them to learn more about money xx

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