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How to Teach Kids to Earn and Value Their Money

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Financial Literacy
Katie Becker

 

You know you want your child to have a good understanding of money management; one that ensures they will be able to use money thoughtfully, understand how it works in the context of society, and be able to leverage it towards the goals and dreams they have for their futures. The question is, HOW? How do we build that kind of capacity starting young?

Here are some simple ways to start:

  1. Brainstorm a list of chores/jobs around the house with your child. Categorize them into two groups. First, daily/weekly jobs that your child MUST do as a contributing member of the household. And second, larger jobs around the house that your child can get paid extra for. 

  2. Determine a weekly allowance that feels right for your family and your child’s age.

  3. Create a tracking method that allows for your child to track their completion of their daily and weekly chores. (This can and should be simple - a whiteboard, bulletin board, or handwritten sheet that hangs on the refrigerator!)

  4. Offer allowance at the end of each week when chores have been completed. 

  5. Begin teaching the idea of money that we earn going to four places: spending, savings, expenses, and giving.   (We keep it simple for our six and eight year olds, four chores a day for four dollars a week, and one dollar goes to each category at the end of each week.)

  6. Depending on your child’s age, construct those categories appropriately. It could be change or cash placed into jars for young ones and an online bank account for older children. 

  7. As time goes by, your child can learn to use the money from the categories they have. Ways those categories can be used:

    1. Spending: Anything your child chooses! If they have the money, they can spend it.

    2. Saving: Not to be touched. This is for big items they need down the road. We explain it to our kids as money that can contribute towards purchasing a car, a cell phone, or larger items they need as they get older.  (This is one account that we set up in a bank account for our children and we occasionally login with them so they can see how much money is in there.)

    3. Expenses: Depending on age, this could be as simple as contributing to pay for presents for a friend’s birthday party, or as big as contributing to the family internet costs or paying a portion of their phone bill, etc. Kids need to understand the things that adults pay for on a daily/monthly basis.

    4. Giving: Used for donating money to causes that are important to your child or your family. It could be an offering at your church (if applicable) or a donation to an animal shelter. It definitely can be used to contribute money to their grade level service project or dress down dollar day cause.

Get the money conversations started at home! Take one small step to start some routines that teach your child both responsibility and money management.

 


 

 

 

 

 

About the Author:
Katie Becker is Director of Aspen Entrepreneurial Institute and Aspen Youth Leadership Institute at Aspen Academy.

Katie came to Aspen Academy in 2009 and has served as a Teacher, Instructional Coach, Character and Leadership Director, and Middle School Director. She began working in architecture after graduating from CU Boulder but soon found that her heart was in education. She then earned her Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and went on to hold teaching positions in middle school and elementary grades.

She believes that seeing the student as the most critical aspect of education and allowing them to flourish based on who they are is what draws her so close to Aspen and its ideals. She has three children and enjoys everything that the beautiful mountains have to offer, including skiing, hiking, and biking, as well as spending time with interior design, books, and a camera.

Katie is available to speak on various topics in leadership and entrepreneurship to community groups. Click here to contact Katie about speaking.