In today’s world, it’s not enough to merely let our children out in the “real world” with no education on how to handle money. Sure, kids know what nickels and dimes are, but do they know how to make those same nickels and dimes last with their budget?
After reading an article from TIME about “Women and Money: Why You Need to Take Control Now“, I realized that as women we experience financial barriers that can hinder us in making our fullest earning potential. Why is this article relevant to teaching children about money and how to save? As women and mothers, we hold the responsibility to nurture our children so that they blossom into considerate and caring human beings. Unfortunately, being considerate and caring isn’t going to pay the bills. We must have our children learn the in’s and out’s of financial responsibility. This will aide them in making financially sound decisions when they have their own money to spend.
Teaching Toddlers and Preschoolers About Money
Even though toddlers may not understand the concept of money, you can still educate them through your words concerning money. Instead of saying that you cannot afford a certain toy that your child is begging for, you should explain to her using such phrases like “I can afford this toy, but it isn’t worth the price.” This will inevitably tell your kids that it is wise to set your priorities with your budget. The bills and food expenses come first, and entertainment comes last, if at all.
If you’re one of those parents that gives allowances (I wasn’t), consider setting a specific amount of money per chore. When the time comes for them to spend the well-deserved money on a must-have toy or a yummy ice cream treat, inform them that if they don’t have enough that you are not going to pay for the difference. This will teach kids that mommy and daddy are not always going to be there to hold their hand at the cash register. If you have a $15 toy, and you only have $14…the cashier isn’t going to allow you to put the toy in your shopping cart. You simply do not have enough money. Tell your child that maybe after another week or two of hard work around the house, that he or she might have enough to pay for the toy or treat in whole.
Don’t wait to have the talk about money with your children. Kids can spiral out of control with money very quickly. I remember when I was a child, I took frequent trips to the neighborhood dollar store and bought random toys that would break within a day or two. Looking back, I wish I would have saved up any money I received for birthday and Christmas and spent it on a more sturdy (and awesome) toy.
Additionally, it’s almost impossible to really educate your children about money if you haven’t mastered the art either. That’s why with Genworth Financial, they have beneficial tools and information concerning how to budget your insurance, whether it be for life insurance, retirement, long term care, mortgage insurance or caregiving.
As a young, single mother, I realize that having a firm hold on my finances is crucial. I can’t imagine how many times I barely had enough for a pack of diapers. Since becoming aware of how to manage my money, I’ve put superficial purchases on hold until I become more financially stable. Hopefully after you read the vital information on Genworth Financial’s website, you’ll be better educated with your finances, as well!