When it comes to teaching my kids to save, I subscribe to the oldest parental rule in the book: “Do as I say, not as I do.”
I’m the first to admit I’ve never been good with money. My friends were much better at utilizing piggy banks for chore money or tooth-fairy quarters (back in my day, the tooth-fairy only brought quarters). I could never hang onto money for more than a few days.
Having a day where I am be reminded to teach my kids better life lessons than the ones I learned is a quite a good idea. But I’ll be honest. I’m not the person to teach my kids this. I’m still not good with money. No life lessons were learned. In our house, the tooth-fairy quite frequently left I.O.Us and we don’t ever give “real” money for chores – it’s more like a bitcoin scheme in the sense that our kids do chores for which we never hand them any sort of real currency because we never, ever have cash. Instead, they get fake money, which is “used” by us to buy things off their Amazon Wishlists.
Luckily, there are some good tools put out by the American Bankers Association to help parents teach good saving and spending skills. There is even a specific day called Teach Your Children to Save Day, which is coming up on April 29th. Check out their website for a wealth (see what I did there?) of information that might help you and your children get more money savvy. Your local bank may also have events to celebrate or materials that can be used. A banker friend of mine also tells me that some banks have special bank accounts for kids that helps them save and monitor what they are spending. Ask your local banker if they have a program like this. And I enjoyed reading “11 Ways to Teach Kids How to Save Money” from the Money Crashers website.
Finally, over the years, Cricket Media magazines have published articles and issues about the importance of money in all our lives. You can order our Financial Literacy Theme Pack which contains 5 of our money matters issues and enjoy a sneak peak of one of the articles you’ll find inside the Take It To the Bank issue of Cobblestone, called Meet Bill.
Cricket Media Mama has heard of the concept of “saving money for a rainy day.” And when it comes to subscribing to that philosophy, let’s put it this way: it might be time for us to move to Death Valley, CA – which, incidentally, gets the least amount of rain in the country.