Ideas to Give Your Kids Hands-On Experience with Money
Whether you’re teaching them how to tie their shoes or drive a car, you’re already passing down a lot of important skills to your children. Make sure to empower them with the essentials of money management too! Not sure where to start? Try some of these hands-on ideas.
Ideas for Preschoolers
Teach them about currency by making your own pretend store at home. Create pretend money out of paper and put sticky notes on play food. Help them figure out the right amount of money they need for each item at checkout.
Money can be a tough concept for little ones to grasp, so turn into something they can see. Use two or three clear mason jars and tape a picture of something they want to save for such as a new toy or book. Each time they get birthday or holiday money, they can put it in the jar and watch their savings grow until they have enough to buy the item pictured.
Ideas for Grade Schoolers
Take your child to the grocery store with you. Pick out a few items that they can help you with comparison shopping such as cereal, snacks or bread. Discuss which one is cheapest and which one is most expensive. Ask them if they think the more expensive product is worth the money and why? How much could you save by buying the cheaper product?
Host a yard sale. Ask your child to help you price items and have them take the lead on collecting money and making change.
Ideas for Middle Schoolers
Family Fun Night
Give your child a budget for a family fun night, such as $100. Tell them they can spend it on the dinner and activities of their choice. Have them research ahead of time how much dinner at different restaurants would cost or how much various activities would cost like a movie, bowling or roller skating. Give them cash to pay for the evening and stay within budget.
Help them brainstorm ways they could earn their own money by doing small jobs for family members and neighbors such as walking dogs or shoveling snow.
Ideas for High Schoolers
Whether they want to be a camp lifeguard, scoop ice cream or mow lawns, your teen can get a lot out of a summer job including their first paycheck. On top of learning the value of hard work, you can help them think through how they want to spend their earnings. Do they want to save up for concert tickets to see their favorite band? How about college or their first car?
If your teen is still tucking their money away in a piggy bank, it’s time to open a Youth Checking and Savings Account so they can get real experience managing their money before adulthood. They can even use Digital Banking to check their balance, transfer money and mobile deposit checks.
It’s never too early to start teaching your children about money management! Giving them hands-on experience now will help them make smart financial decisions into the future.