We have been making more of an effort recently to ensure that Ava doesn’t think that money grows on trees. I want her to understand that money has to be earned and once its gone its gone. I will hold my hands up and say I spoil my children but they do know that when I say no to something it means no. Ava being older doesnt kick off she knows that I may not be able to get her something at that moment in time but when I have the money she can have a treat. So this is how to teach money skills to children. The skills you give them now will see them thought their life.
I dont know about you but more and more I use my card. I very rarely have cash on me. Which when your trying to teach your children about money isn’t really that good. As they need to see the money physically. This is the reason why we have started to give Ava some pocket money. She is still only little so at the moment she doesnt have to earn it by doing do chores but she does know that if she is good and were going somewhere we will give her some spending money.
She has her own my little pony purse that is always in my bag. So when we go to places she uses the money from there to get herself something. It’s important for children to see that the money goes once you have spent it.
Recently we went on a trip to the farm. We told her that if she was good and listened to us around the farm that she could have two pound to put in her purse to use at the gift shop.
She kept to her side of the deal and was so good. She even did something I didn’t think she would do and fed the baby lambs. This may seem like nothing but Ava normally crumbles in situations like this and says she doesnt want to do it. When in fact I can tell she really does want to she just lacks confidence.
So we went to the gift shop and she had her two pound to spend. First of all she picked something up that was £4. I explained to her that she didn’t have enough to pay for it as four was a bigger number than two. She was able to understand this and put it back and looked at what else there was. She then saw a pencil and a pad and asked if she could get it. Which she did have enough money for so she was able to get it. Watching the joy on her face paying for her things with her own money is just amazing.
Since doing this I have noticed her attitude to money change. She is thinking more about how much things are going to cost me . I know she is only three and she doesnt understand it fully but surely putting these foundations in from a young age can only be a positive right ?
The other day we went to our local toddler group which costs me £1.60. In the car I said to Ava that I needed to go to the cash point and get some money as I didn’t have any. She said to me ” Ava got money in mommy’s bag” so I asked her if I could use her money to which she replied ” yes Ava pay , If I good girl and tidy up I can get more money it’s okay mommy” . So Yes I used her money she understood that she could earn more money soon and that she wanted to go to playgroup so she could pay with her money. At this point I dont think I have ever been more proud of her at how grown up she was being.
In the future I am going to ensure that she has things to do to earn her money like.
- Making her bed
- Tidying away her clothes
- Doing her homework
- Helping set the table
- Tidy away after meal times
The most important thing when teaching children about the importance of money is communication. Make sure they understand what it is your trying to teach them. For instance I make a point of saying to Ava. If I buy her this chocolate bar now she wont be able to have something when we go soft play later. Even at the age of three I can see her weighing up which one she wants.
I also think one of the biggest things children have to learn when it comes to money is that not. Everyone is in the same position as they are. This can be taught really easily . By going through their toys and explaining that they have lots of toys but there are some children that dont have lots of toys. So shall we send some toys to those children. We do this quite often as I think this is an important lesson to teach.
The biggest part of teaching children about money is to make sure that your a positive role model. So when you go on a big spending spree, then take them here there and everywhere they may think that money is not a problem that’s its an unlimited resource. Just make sure you explain that this money was earned and what you had to do for it. But once it’s gone it’s gone and it then means that there wont be all these treats and nice days out.
I’m just hoping that I can start her off on the right path. One where she has good money skills and wont get into a mountain of debt.