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Money Enrichment: Going Beyond Allowance for Kids

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kid-invoiceMaybe you have a piggy bank  for your child.

You even give them an allowance for chores they have completed, but they aren’t as money smart as you’d like them to be.

It can be disheartening.

You may think you don’t know enough to show them, so it all seems pointless.

Don’t get too down in the dumps, not giving yourself enough credit may be the CULPRIT.

There are many ways to improve their money skills so they don’t miss out on the knowledge they deserve.

Discover 10 enrichment tips to help you empower your child to be financially savvy.

1. Use cash in the real world.

The best place to practice is in real life. Trips to the mall and grocery store are priceless opportunities for teaching your child money lessons. Kids will better understand the value of a dollar when they see it disappear.

Have them pay or at least pay attention when you are at the cash register. Using cash makes spending money visual and concrete. Which is a better choice when first modeling money concepts.

2. Have them invoice you to get paid for work.

Get a spreadsheet and make your own invoice for chores and teach them a little accounting along the way. They can also learn delayed gratification by waiting until the end of the week to get paid like adults do. I did this with my daughter.

She would do chores and write them down on a chart or random pieces of paper. She called me out on forgetting to pay her one time. I decided to show her how to make an invoice.

We made a spreadsheet together and she emails it to me when the job is complete.  I pay her at the end of the week. Fair enough, right?

3. Play board games that show concepts of building wealth and minimizing debt.

Here’s 5 Best Educational Board Games for Money Management.

4. Play money bingo.  

This is great for grades 1-4. Many products have the grade level marked on the box so you’ll know if it’s appropriate.

5. When shopping, help guide decisions of what to spend money on.

Show the importance of spending on an experience   as well as buying material items. This will help them value both types of spending and learn to value special memories.

6. Write pretend checks.

Practice math skills and nurture of a love of managing money.

7. Look for resources and start at a young age.

Here is a parents’ guide for kids and money for both younger and older children.

8. Try engaging math activities.

A hundreds chart game is helpful for remembering what the coins are worth.

9. Make your own free printable money math sheets.

Customize the type of problems, coins, and levels of difficulty you want to use to suit your child’s needs.

10. Make a wallet.

Here’s a paper wallet for first graders. Older kids love to make real duct tape wallets.

I also included one BONUS tip at the bottom. It’s my favorite!


Bonus Tip:

Play with calculators.

Kids love to push buttons and pretend they are grown-up. Calculators are my favorite way to teach kids money skills and get them interested in math. Whether performing basic math or more complex arithmetic, having a fun tool to get the job done makes the experience more enjoyable and keeps kids interested. Younger kids can use them for pretend play and simple calculations.

While older kids could attempt to set a savings or investment goals. They can get an idea of how much can potentially be put away by playing with numbers a calculator. Informal activities like this also expand and reinforce math vocabulary. The child can learn new words in context which facilitates understanding.

Words like value, balance, shortfall, and percentage rate growth may have to be explained but basic math is easy to teach on this calculator below. The math is easy enough for a third grader but the skill is needed for every age on up. Exposure can’t hurt. Show your child the calculator below.


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