Of Need and Want – the Benefits of Teaching Kids Taking Care of Money
The subject of child and money relations might seem too ambitious. Or even premature – sounding almost like we’re forcing a child to grow up too soon. But the fact is – it’s always a good time to teach kids to handle money.
Scientific researches show that applying the basics of an economy in early ages will have a great impact on a child’s financial habits and money decisions later.
Scientific authorities aside, we would like to point out that the school does not have to be a fun-spoiler as long as the curriculum is being properly anchored in real life.
For instance, money is a great example of applied mathematics.
“IF YOU GAVE 10 KUNAS FOR A BREAD COSTING ONLY 6 KUNAS, HOW MUCH CASH DO YOU NEED IN RETURN?”
Lessons taught in schools are mostly abstract to children.
That’s a mistake in approach. If teachers fail to bring schooling closer to a child’s real-life experience, parents still have enough room to make it right in everyday routine.
In the case of math, each shopping is a chance to do it.
Shopping with kids is stressful most days. Our young lions give their best efforts to persuade us to buy them toys. New toys if possible. Or sweets at least. So, to avoid nervous breakdowns parents tend to skip it. Which we can totally relate to.
And what parents are really missing is a chance to teach kids a valuable lesson – the one of need and want.
WHAT WE NEED AND WHAT WE WANT
Here is an idea:
Have you ever thought of giving your child an active role while shopping together? No? You’d be surprised how seriously they are keen to take it. To transform their shopping experience into a game. And soon they forget all about those new toys and sweets.
Give them a simple task. Like finding and calculating prices to your shopping list.
Take care that only the needed stuff is included on your shopping list. Food, detergent, vacuum cleaner bags and stuff like that. And make sure you all agreed on an exact amount of money at your disposal for that particular buy.
For the rest, you can buy something you don’t need, but your children want.
But, let child calculate on its own, let them pride themselves on given a responsibility. As a result, they will start estimating what is it they want that is really worth spending money on. And you’ve just taught your child a difference between needing and wanting.
Lesson learned. Mission accomplished.
And even more – you’ve just made sure that someday your child’s going to handle finance wisely.
POST SCRIPTUM – How about your child’s writing and reading skills? Why don’t you try the game of reading captions from a tram while driving? The one not fast enough to read all the captions ’till next crossroad – loses. Try it.