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Raising Money Smart Kids Series–Part 1-Earning

As parents are becoming more integrated with their kids’ education, many are choosing to incorporate real-life lessons in their planning. Why not give money lessons a whirl? There’s nothing special you need—if you’re working, managing bills, and in general, living—you’ve got the tools you need.

In this short series, we’ll be covering some basic money concepts you can use across age ranges.

To make the topic stick, think about ages and stages. You know your child’s level of attention span, level of interest in details, and their comprehension. Some kids may gobble the information up, some may need a few lessons before concepts really stick.

Try to make teachable moments a part of every day life. Though they aren’t likely going out grocery shopping with you these days, you can still go over the concepts of price comparison or coupons while online shopping. Start with the simple things and work up towards the bigger stuff.

There are three components you’ll want to cover: Earning, Spending, and Saving.

Let’s break down Earning.

Allowances are a big part of this for most kids. Most parents have a base layer of chores—call them “Citizen of the Household Jobs” that are basic expectations. As in, “Since you live here, we expect you to have your bed made every day.” However, they may earn extra for paid chores such as helping with dishes, cleaning up after pets, or additional responsibilities.  The amount you pay and how you pay is strictly up to you.  Whether it’s “all or nothing” pay scheme or “pay per job” is also up to you. What’s important: Make sure you pay them on a consistent basis and that they know what level of completion you expect on these jobs.

Gift Money is also a part of most kids’ earning experience. Whether they get some fun money from grandparents, birthday and holiday gifts, it all adds up.

No matter how the earnings come in, practice with kids the importance of splitting their money between savings, spending, and sharing.

Next up: How to Teach the Little Ones About Money!

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