BOSTON (CBS) – April is National Financial Literacy month. I think we need more than a month to learn about financial principles. That said, let’s talk about teaching our kids about money.
Kids do not know enough about money. A recent study by DoughMain.com shows that overwhelmingly parents feel it’s their responsibility to teach their kids about money and savings, yet they are not actively doing it.
Most grownups don’t know enough about money! Look at the financial mess we are slowly digging ourselves out of. People took out mortgages they could not afford. They invested in risky stuff. They were fooled by conmen!
And every day our kids are exposed to instant gratification and a society that values million dollar athletes and very expensive shoes.
Kids need to learn about money. They need to know where money comes from, how it gets earned, spent and saved. For the most part, there is not enough money education in the schools. I once thought that the ideal time to start teaching money skills would be when the kiddo was in first grade.
Having a grandchild has made me re-think that theory. My granddaughter at 3½ understood that I give the cashier at Walmart either my credit card or money and I could walk out of the store with a cart full of stuff, some of which was going to be hers. She doesn’t understand credit, but she does know about the magic card I carry. When you have children, the money lessons need to start before they get on that kindergarten bus!
It’s not the sit down and lecture kind of lessons, it’s what you do every day and your attitude about money. Your kids are very aware of what’s going on in the family regarding money. Is there a power struggle around money, arguments? Are you secretive? Do you delay gratification? Do you save?