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When you have your first child, no one hands you a handbook on how to teach kids to save money. They also don’t hand you one on potty training or anything else for that matter. I think the biggest reason they can’t do that is because there is no right answer for any one thing.
Each kid needs a little different way of talking to them, a little different approach to helping them to understand a concept. It is the same with saving money. But I have found that there is one concept that will always work but the way you apply it changes.
We have always struggled with giving our kids money. We knew these 5 tips for teaching kids about money, but we needed something that would work for all of them equally. I mean, when do you give them money? How much do you give them? What do you have them buy? There are a million questions that need to be answered.
I saw an article on teaching children how to save money and decided we needed a change. So after having a really good talk with my husband, who remember is a spender, we decided to do this one thing. We would have our children work for money.
How working for money helps kids to save
By deciding that we would have them work for money, it opened up all kinds of opportunities and conversations with our kids. We were able to help them understand the value of work, the value of saving and the value of buying things for themselves.
We decided to have some non-paid jobs and to pay our kids for other jobs. This way they learn to work to care for the basic needs and to work for the money they need for other items.
We also decided to have them pay for their own toys or other items rather than us. We, of course, pay for their basic needs. We buy them food, clothing, household items, things like that. But if they want toys or extras other then for gifts, they have to save and pay for it themselves.
Many people think our method is drastic, but it has worked wonders for our kids in understanding the power of working for what you want, saving your money and having pride in the things you buy. This has also helped us to be better managers of our money and not buy things to appease a child. #dadalwaysgivesin #justsayin
How to teach kids to save money and work for what they have
We started this method with a family council. We talked about how we are changing the way we were going to do things. We asked for the kids feedback on jobs and what they would be asked to do.
We then took what they gave us and used a job chart that we used previously. We did a makeover of the chart and took velcro dots and put part of the dot on the paid jobs. We then took some cards that I used for homeschool but were no longer using and put the other side of the velcro on the card. When one of our kids completes a job, they move it to a card and that is what we pay from.
Each Monday we have a family night. We sit down together and go over how many jobs each child has done and count out how much we owe them. They are then formally paid for these jobs and we take them off the velcro pages and put them back on the chart.
We then have each child put aside 10% for tithing and we talk with them about if they are saving for anything and how much more they have to accomplish their goals. This gives us a chance to talk with them and teach them individually about saving money in a way they understand with words and situations they relate to.
This is how we keep them motivated to keep working and keep saving. This one change of giving out kids commission changed so much. We don’t wonder how to teach kids to save money anymore. We are doing it right along with them and teaching them naturally as we go.
Be sure to check out more information on teaching kids to save money! Remember that no kid is the same so you may need a couple different approaches so all the kids learn!