Teaching kids about money is tough. But you can use everyday moments to reinforce the money principles you want to teach your kids.

Teaching your kids budgeting

As early as eight years old, kids begin to understand that their parents are not made of money. You can explain the basics of your household budget to help them grasp how much money goes towards the necessity such as the mortgage, gas, groceries, clothing, and etc.

You do not need to share specific dollar amounts to teach your kids about money. The simplest way to visually show your kid your budget is to create a pie chart. You can show what percentage of your household income is allocated towards the basics and how much is left over for extras like vacations, eating out, or gifts.

Teaching your kids saving

As soon as you decide to give your kids an allowance, it is time to start teaching them about saving their money. Some experts recommend parents encouraged their kids to divide their allowance into categories.

Depending on your families’ governing values, you can have your kids set aside a portion of their allowance for charity; long term savings, depending on the age of your kids that could be several weeks to save up for an expensive toy; and immediate spending.

Teaching your kids smart spending

When you start giving your kids an allowance, it is a good idea to start guiding your kids’ spending choices. As kids become older, they also become more brand conscious when trying to keep up with their peers.

You can have her make a list of pros and cons before spending her allowance on an expensive item.

You can show her how to comparison shop online to find the best deal.

If your kid is going to spending the money, your job as a parent is to teach them how to be smart about spending. Smart spending and savings are the two sides to the same coin of teaching your kids money management.

Teaching your kids plastic

Your kids’ money management education is not complete without at least a discussion about plastic. You don’t want your kid’s first and only experience with credit cards at the sign booths on the first day of class at the college campus. Plastic is an indispensable part of money management in the 21st century.

You can start teenagers with a debit card that is linked to their savings account. You can deposit their allowance into it so they can learn the responsibility of using plastic. Do not make the mistake of signing up for automatic overdraft protection on their accounts.

Just be sure not to bail them out when they used all their money on video games or expensive jeans and to not have anything left over for new sneakers. They just need to learn to wear sneakers with holes in them for a while.

Teaching kids money management

Teaching kids about money is hard. But it is better to start the conversation when the kids are young and malleable. Do not wait until they are packing for college to start the conversation about good money management.