I don’t have children yet so I don’t have experience of trying to teach a child about money. However, my first memory of money is playing ‘shops’ at around 5 years old with my Nannan while she completed the accounts for my Grandad’s business.
Throughout school we are not taught anything about budgeting, savings, mortgages, types of debt or investing. These areas are really important for future years and for some reason they aren’t included in our education syllabus and therefore the majority of a child’s financial habits come from their parents, grandparents or friends.
Research shows that a child has created their own money habits by the age of 7.
Children need an understanding of three things:
- How to earn money
- How to keep money
- How to grow money
The first steps to help a child understand money is to engage them. This could be done via play early on with a toy till, or openly discussing money with them when they get a little older.
If you give your children a small amount of money each week, allow them to make their own decisions and give them some financial responsibility to decide what to do with it. They might spend it all each week, but they might start to learn the value of saving and buying something bigger in the future.
If you have been saving for a child since they were young, for example in a Junior ISA, including them in discussions about what money they have will help them to gain a greater understanding of finances and value for money at a later age.
Robert Gardner has published a book ‘Save Your Acorns’ that helps teach young children, and their families, the importance of budgeting, saving, investing and sharing – it’s certainly worth a read.
He has also created a card game called ‘Silly Monkeys’. The aim of Silly Monkeys is to help your squirrel store more acorns than your opponents in a sustainable way and avoid the Silly Monkey that encourages players to eat all their acorns at once! The moral of the game is that if you work hard and save your acorns, you can make sure that when you need resource – i.e. money – you will always have a healthy supply.
If you would like to discuss savings for children or any other financial planning matter, please do not hesitate to contact us on 0114 2588899 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Our Independent Financial Advisers are qualified to provide advice in the areas of retirement planning, tax planning, savings, inheritance tax, investments and protection.
Source – Sophie Smith – Independent Financial Adviser