How was money introduced to you as a child? Were you given a piggybank to collect your pennies in? Or did you have a Saturday job? No matter how you got started, it would seem that a lot of parents want these skills to be introduced to their children early on.
Recent research* conducted for us found that three-quarters of parents want financial education to start while their kids are at primary school. Of those surveyed, 90 percent of parents say that they do currently teach their school-age children about money management.
How to teach your child
At the moment, children have to wait till secondary school to be introduced to financial education as part of the new Maths and Citizenship curriculum that was introduced last year. But what if you want to introduce money management skills to your child earlier than this? Well, here’s a few ways that you can:
Let them pay
An easy way to get your child familiar with handling cash is to let them pay. So the next time you’re at the checkout, talk to them about the different types of coins and count with them the amount that you need. To keep this up at home, you could play shop with them using fake money.
Use a jam jar
As you probably already know by now, we here at thinkmoney are very fond of the humble jam jar – so why not use these to get across the different approaches to spending to your child?
Label two jam jars ‘spending’ and ‘saving’, then explain to your child that the saving jar is for long-term saving (for a bigger toy or bike) while the spending jar is for money that they can spend now. You could then guide them on how to split their pocket money up.
If your child is a little older, then you could introduce a rewards system to help them earn the pocket money or allowance that you give them. The deal being that they help you do odd jobs around the house (like tidying up, loading the dishwasher or dusting) and you pay them something for each job that they do (within reason, of course).
This is a good way of teaching your child that money doesn’t just fall from the sky and that you have to work in order to receive it.
thinkmoney Personal Account
Many of us pick up our money habits from our parents, so if like 30 percent of those surveyed you struggle to budget your own finances, then why not give your child an example to be proud of, by getting your finances in order. You could set up a budget, by following our detailed guide. Or if you’re looking for more long-term help, could consider the thinkmoney Personal Account.
A budgeting account like thinkmoney’s (for which fees are payable) will help make managing your money that little bit simpler. For more information on the account and how it works, click here.
*Red Dot questioned a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults aged 18 and over between 17th July and 23rd July 2015, of whom 634 were Scottish residents.