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Teaching Children the Value of Money

Life With Our Wild Ones

In today’s climate of rapid inflation, increased use of tap & go payments and accessible credit and afterpay functions, it is becoming more and more difficult for young people to get a grasp on finances.  Apparently avocados have some part to play in this but I’m not so convinced :). So, I feel that its really important to start young in teaching them how money works and the value in saving. But where to start…..

Millie & Ollie Love playing shops and they love pretending to buy things with their pretend money. Bingo – found my in-road!

Recently, every time we go to a shop, the markets, restaurants, or any other place where we are required to pay for something they have started to ask us if they can pay by tapping our Credit Card. When we go to a restaurant and the Bill is brought to the table, Millie & Ollie (Mr & Miss Independent) have started asking us for the bill and our credit card so that they can go up to the counter by themselves and pay.

I have noticed that since they have started doing this more, that their way of playing shops has now changed. Instead of paying with pretend money they now pay with pretend cards and pay by tapping a card.

When we’re out – we get the usual pleading to buy things from the shops, or ask to go to a restaurant (they never miss those golden arches) and we say ‘not today’ or that ‘we don’t have money to do that’ they now reply by saying “It’s OK, we can just tap your card”. YIKES!  As they are starting to say this more often, we decided that we needed to start teaching them about money – how it works, how it’s earned and how to manage their own money.

To teach them how to EARN money, I have made them each a chore board. On this I have 5 jobs. They are simple jobs, but they are only four years old so couldn’t go too overboard (although I will admit, the prospect of them helping with tasks is quite exciting). Each time they complete a job they a star on the board as well as 50 cents to pop in their money box. I’m hoping that in doing this that they learn that to have money you do need to work and earn it, and that its not just a piece of plastic with unlimited money that you tap. I’m also secretly hoping that if this works that I no longer need to make their beds and pick up their toys. WIN! 

To encourage them to MANAGE their money I made them these cute little Spend, Save & Give Money boxes (see top picture). Each time they complete a task on their chore board, and they get 50 cents they have a choice as to which money box they put their money into. Each time they put money into a different box we talk about why they want to SAVE money, who they want to GIVE their money to (currently it is the buskers at our local markets) and how they want to SPEND their money.  

This is a new thing we have only just started doing with Mille & Ollie; however, they’re currently very excited by this idea and love earning stars, sticking stars in their board and love dropping money in their money boxes. I love that they are starting to be proactive and make their beds in the morning and that they are a little more encouraged to clean their bedroom. I make sure to give them plenty of praise to go with it and right now this is a win-win for everyone! Definitely worth the roll of fifty pence pieces! Give it a go with your littlies and let me know how you go!

Until next time

Chelsea xxx

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