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How to Teach Children and Teenagers the Value of Money

By Edited Sep 25, 2015 2 4

Teach your child how to manage money

Teach children the value of money





For many reasons I believe that our children do not understand the value of money anymore. Often parents give them whatever they ask for without batting an eye especially the more wealthy families. This is not good for our children's wellbeing.

I am not saying that it is the parent's fault it happens all over the world. Computers and calculators make it far too easy for them; they do not have to use their brains anymore. Teachers do their best, but they no longer have the control in a classroom of children. Teachers have lost their right to punish troublemakers and children disrupting the classroom.

In this article I hope to give you a few ideas on how to teach children and teenagers the value of money, and how to get the best out of saving and spending their earnings or allowance.

Start teaching them about coins

Begin by teaching children what coins are, and how much each coin is worth. By helping them to count coins you will actually be teaching them to add as well as learn how much money they have.

Make a game out of it, by playing shopkeepers. Ask them to draw coins on a piece of paper and cut them out, then pretend to go shopping with their paper money. Have some ornaments or toys on a cupboard and put a price on each one. Then see if they can add up some paper coins to the total of one of the toys to see if they have enough to buy it.

Invite their playmates in to join in the fun and add extra incentive. There are many ways to make games out of this type of thing with a little imagination on your part.

Paper Money

Once they have learned the value of the coins, explain and show them the values of paper money. Once they have gained experienced with this they will need to put their lessons into action.

Saving their money

Give your children an allowance. No do not give them twenty dollars a week. I suggest you start with younger children by giving them two dollars a week. For this they need to do a few jobs each week. Simple jobs like keeping their rooms tidy, drying up the cutlery, or the plastics.

To make this successful draw up a roster of each job they have to do. Each child has its own roster. If they forget or decide they do not want to do the jobs, deduct five cents each time.

I know you think that is mean. No it is teaching them to be responsible and that money does not grow on trees. If they do their jobs then they can save their money. Let them decide how much they spend. Try to encourage them to save half and spend half. That way they are learning to save up for the really good things they want.

Money boxes and setting goals

Learn to earn money then spend it

These are a great way to encourage children and adults to save their money for something special. Ask them to find a picture of something that they really want. Put this picture on the fridge to give them an added incentive and a goal to save their money.

Going Shopping for real

Now is the time to put their lessons into practice. Each week let them spend the amount they have decided upon. They should now understand that if an item costs three dollars and they only have two then they have to wait and save more.

As they go through the checkouts every time you go shopping show them the docket and ask them to tell you how much change you should get. This will also help them with their maths.

I cannot stress enough just how many young shop assistants cannot count back the change to their customers. If the power goes off and the cash register does not tell them how much change to give out, they stand there dumbfounded. They have no clue how much money to give the customer.

While working in a retail shop I found that all my juniors had this problem. I taught them all how to work out the change and to always count the money out into the customers hand. On the odd chance that they have picked up two notes stuck together, they will often notice it when counting back.

Writing checks

Show them how to write a cheque. Again you can use play cheques for them to spend with their playmates.

Investing and Buying

The older children could play Monopoly this is a great game to encourage the value of saving, buying and then investing their money.

How to Budget

Learning how to budget is very important for everyone. Write down how much you need for fuel, bus fares and everything that you have to pay each week. Allow yourself a couple of dollars for the unexpected. Whatever is left put it into a savings bank account? Try to save half your earnings every week.

In conclusion

I hope you haved learned some good ideas on how to teach children and teenagers the value of money. Do not spend more than you earn. Do not put anything on credit cards.

Learn to go without if you cannot afford to pay for it. You will be better off in the long run than most of your friends if you follow most of the above suggestions.








Jan 24, 2010 9:27am
great advice. Many parents just sort of take it for granted children will understnad money. This is probably why so many do not.
Feb 2, 2010 7:33am
ethel, yes thats what I reckon too.
Feb 2, 2010 7:07am
Great article about teaching children the value of money! For years I have been letting my kids choose one food item as a treat at the grocery store. It didn't matter what it was they could only choose one. In the begining it would be a piece of gum or a lollipop. Now, that they know the value of money, they pick a pizza, box of cereal, case of jello..... See they have gotten wise to the sytem lol.
Feb 2, 2010 7:35am
cWilliam, very true I think kids have been here before, they are more clever than us.
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