Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Kids and Money
We have been talking lately about how to teach the kids about money. It's one of those things that can be tricky- we don't want them to stress about it but we want them to know the value of things and be aware.
The new approach is that they each have chores to work on during the week. Brixton has three and Unity has six. Not every chore is needed every day but they know they need to do some things every day. On Sunday we hand out the allowance money- Unity gets five cents per chore and Brixton gets fifty cents per week. I know our allowance is probably way cheap compared to other families, but right now we are just teaching them about money and what it means and what to do with it. When they start asking for fancier stuff maybe we'll raise it. Maybe.
We use this great bank called the Moonjar. Obviously the thrifty thing to do would be to make it ourselves but it's a local company and I like supporting them. The bank is divided into three sections- one for saving, one for spending and one for giving. When the kids get their allowance, they divide it into the three categories. Then, when we're out and they start asking for stuff, I tell them they can decide to use their own money to buy it, if they can afford it.
This past weekend we were running errands and Unity wanted to bring her spending money- all three dollars and eighty cents. She got really into the idea of buying something, to the point where she wanted to buy almost anything, it was just the act of spending her own money that she was excited about. We walked around the store and looked at lots of prices. She was starting to get sad that she couldn't afford all the flashy toys but we talked about how she could save up for something bigger. She finally found a small notebook with a pretty cover that was in her price range and she was happy with.
It was a really good exercise and a reminder that kids need a foundation for this stuff- otherwise they will be totally overwhelmed when they get to college or get their first apartment. So, we're starting.