Take Them to a Yard Sale

The purpose of taking your children to a yard sale is manifold. One reason is that you get to spend time together. Another reason is that they get to see how such sales have tables laden with kids’ stuff. Then there is also the fact that it will help your kids discover that they are able to buy more there than they can do at the mall. An alternative is a local thrift shop that may be visited on Saturdays, if your family likes to sleep in late on the weekends.

Switch Over from Piggy Banks

While saving is a good thing to teach your kids, having them put their money in a piggy bank isn’t so great. Instead, have them use a clear glass jar to collect their money. This way, they can see how much they have saved and how much farther they need to go. They can see the money growing while it stays safe in the jar. Don’t stop them when they want to count the money and share their excitement.

Allocate the Money in Different Jars

Now that you have switched to glass jars from piggy banks, there is another thing you can do. To help them understand the ways in which they can use money, make it three jars. Let them decorate the jars in any way they want. After they are done, label the jars. The idea is that the money in one of them is to be spent, the second is for saving, and the last one is to be given away. Then discuss what each jar represents to the children and decide how much money goes into each jar.

Walking into a Store Does Not Necessarily Mean Shopping

Since what your kids learn at an early age will set the tone for how they use money later on, these lessons are important. The trick is to start as early as you can. Today’s kids are pretty smart and catch on quickly. If you tell them you do not have the money to spend on something, they will know that you can use the credit cards for that. Thus, making them understand that you won’t be buying them what they want every time you go into a store can be a very good thing.

Help Them Understand the Meaning of Delayed Gratification

Dr. Walter Mischel’s “marshmallow test” was the result of an experiment involving children. It entailed children being made to choose to get a marshmallow immediately or double the amount but it would be given to them 15 minutes later. To children, fifteen minutes is a considerable amount of time. The researchers followed the children who took part in the experiment for years. They reported that the children who waited for the marshmallows scored better on their SATs. They also showed lower values of BMI and turned out better educated. Use the test to help your children understand how delayed gratification can be a good thing when it comes to finances.