Money: it’s a taboo subject and we don’t like to talk about it with anyone. Most of us were raised never to speak of it at all. But, as parents, it is our responsibility to raise our children to be smart with their money. Even if we’re not the best with ours.
Money Smart Kids in an Entitled World
One of the hardest parts about raising our kids to be smart with money is the way that currency is used. Most of us never even carry cash anymore. So many of our transactions take place online that they don’t even see where the money is coming from and where it’s going. There are even online games in which you spend actual funds for upgrades. Kids who play these types of games at a young age are far less likely to be responsible with their money as they get older. Imagine a college student with a brand new credit card…the horror!
In our subscription box, online shopping, delivery on demand society teaching our kids to be responsible with their money is only going to get harder. As a Mom, I’m making it a point to teach my son to be better with his money now, so he’s not hurting in the future. I want to share with you some tips, books, and resources to help you in your journey to raise money-smart kids too.
Dave Ramsey is the Money Saving King
My absolute favorite book for teaching your kids how to be smart with their money is Smart Money Smart Kids: Raising the Next Generation to Win with Money, by Dave and his daughter, Rachel Cruze. It gives you practical tips on how to teach your kids (even the really young ones!) to be responsible with their money. We use their tips with our 6-year-old and have for the last few years. He gets his weekly money, and he has to save some (20%), give some (10%), and then he’s allowed to do whatever he wants with the rest. It also teaches you how to avoid debt, which I think is really important for your older kids. Before you send them off into the real world.
There are so many people drowning in debt today, and that’s not the future I want for our son. Dave even has children’s books that help you teach your young ones how to handle money. As well as the Smart Kids Launch Pad– a website with games, activities, and tools that make learning about money fun.
Make Your Kid a Money Genius
Another great book to look into is Make Your Kid a Money Genius (even if you’re not) by Beth Kobliner. She reminds us that even if we’re not that great with our money we can still teach our children to be better. Her tips and diagrams are a great resource. It was a really quick read, and a reminder to start with your kids early. The younger the better! By teaching them the value of work, helping them to properly save, and how to drop debt if they do go down that path, you’ll be setting them up for success. I also love all of her ‘do’s and don’ts. Like, you DO NOT have to tell your kids your salary. But, you do need to be realistic about what you can afford.
Raising Financially Confident Kids
Raising Financially Confident Kids by Mary Hunt is another book I have been reading to get some tips. It’s an older book, but the rules still apply. I really like her view in that sometimes you have to let your kids make some money mistakes. Maybe they spend all of their allowance and can’t afford something that they ‘just have to have’. It’s your job not to get them out of that situation. It hurts now, but you’re saving them a lot of future pain.
With so many resources available at our fingertips- we can really be proactive in raising money-savvy kids. Check out your local library for lots of great books and hands-on materials. Take your kids to work with you one day so they can see where their money comes from. Get them saving in their piggy bank as soon as they can utter the words, “dollars and cents.” You are your kids greatest asset on their financial journey.