mother and daughter walking and discussing how to teach kids about money

5 Simple Ways Parents Can Teach Kids About Money

Starting the conversation about finances is often overlooked and easily missed. When it’s time to teach kids about money, it’s something that doesn’t have to be formal yet will pay huge rewards in a child’s life.

Financial lessons can be learned the hard way, as is often the case, but they can also be learned over time by communication between parents and kids. Here are some simple ideas to give you a boost when you think it’s time to teach your kids about money.

Communicate Regularly About Finance and Money

Finance is all around us. It impacts us daily, it’s visible everywhere we look, and quite frankly it makes the world go round. There are plenty of opportunities to talk about finance with your kids and teenagers, start to think about prioritizing it.

Discussions around saving, shopping, spending, and many other money matters can be discussed throughout the day.

This is not to say that financial literacy needs to be taught with every discussion, but dinner talk about work, banking, and perhaps a current event will go a long way to get teens thinking about the subject matter.

Find and Use Teachable Moments

father and son discussing finance while mother and daughter cut down a tree

Sometimes when one least expects, a moment pops up. A question, an event, a news article. Take advantage of these moments.

GameStop? Great opportunity to talk about the stock market.

Pandemic? Discuss the impact on the economy, the importance of saving money, job security.

Gas price increased ten cents? Supply and demand and anything else you can think of.

A brief discussion on a trending topic will get the wheels turning in a teenage mind. If you’re not familiar with some of the topics you can always discuss what you know.

A lesson in finances doesn’t always have to be college-level, start small.

Involve Your Kids in Your Operations

Without even thinking about it adults regularly worry about money or are dealing with money in some manner. From grocery prices to comparing phone plans or simply paying bills there are many responsibilities.

Why not involve your child in your simplest tasks? If you’re going cell phone shopping let them see the process. Teens love cellphones, let them see how different providers work. Just don’t give in and buy them one.

Signing up for new internet? They love to use the internet, involve them in the purchase and payment.

A trip to the bank to withdraw money or pay a credit card is something worth observing. Better yet it’s free financial education. Ask the teller real questions so your teen can hear it from the source.

Keep in mind it may not be the task that has the most impact on your child, the process and discussion around it may stick.

Educate Yourself

man on computer educating himself on finance

The world is changing and so is the way that money moves. Saving dollar bills under your pillow is no longer the best way to save. Educate yourself on financial matters and share your learnings with your kids.

Inflation plays its course, markets are moving up and down, real estate is going crazy. It’s a dynamic world, keep learning about it and get yourself financially educated. Staying at least one step ahead of your teen will go a long way.

Brushing up on current events will help you get through to your teenager as will learning some of the terms. “What are Bitcoins good for?” is a popular question, what do you know about it?

With a few clicks, the world is at your fingertips and any information is readily available. Don’t underestimate the value of books. The Wealthy Barber is a classic that has plenty of information a young person should learn.

Package Your own Experiences

As much as it may be a bad memory, most adults have learned a hard financial lesson along the trail of life. Why not teach it to your kids before they have to experience it?

This is not an “I told you so” moment, it’s a good story with a good ending moment. Teens don’t like to be talked at, they like to be talked to. When the moment is right, bring it up.

All kids think their parents are perfect at some point and perhaps they’d ask a lot more questions if they knew you weren’t.

The process of learning finances for a teenager will be lifelong. You will not be there every step of the way and unfortunately you will not be able to make all their important decisions.

If you’re not quite sure how to teach your teenager financial responsibility, start to think about planting bits of information into your routine to teach kids about money, your child will have a head start on the road to success.

Not all conversations have to be intellectual and not everything needs to be learned now, but starting the discussion around financial education with your kids may go a long way for their future.

By: Robert | February 2, 2021 |