Has your child begged for a lemonade stand this summer? You don’t need a lemonade stand to teach financial lessons to your kids. Here are some other ways they can learn about money:
• Let your kids make their purchases throughout the summer. This can include purchases at the ice cream truck, at snack bars at sporting events or swimming pools or even at movie theaters or bowling alleys. Wherever you take them, let them have a set amount of money to spend and let them complete the transaction. This allows them to work through comparing prices and options within a budgeted amount.
• Let your kids see what it costs to own a home or an apartment. I’m not suggesting you show them each of your bills, but as you go about your day, and notice things for rent or sale, talk with them. Maybe pick up that “for sale” flyer in front of a house or look at places online to see what the prices are. Maybe talk with them about ways to save money around the house. Help them understand what it truly costs to live.
• Let your kid have options when it comes to payable chores. Let them pick an extra chore or two that comes with a set payment. This helps them feel empowered as well as earn money. Then work with them on how they should use this earned money. This can include discussing short-term and long-term financial goals.
• Let your kids be part of your errands. This helps them see directly how money and decisions are made in daily life. It also helps them to understand the importance of time management, price comparison and budgeting.
• Let your kids help with dinner this summer. This can include planning, budgeting, grocery shopping and learning how to work in the kitchen. You might just enjoy the cooking break and be surprised at their creations!
• Let your kids have a savings account. Help them with the account’s terminology and paperwork, including understanding how to balance an account. If you aren’t sure how to balance an account, now is a great time to learn together.
Last of all, let your kids dream this summer of all the ways they can earn money. You might just be surprised at their ideas and plans.