Teaching Children the Value of Money

Nov 30, 2011

dollar signThe holiday shopping season is in full swing, with Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday all contributing to record sales. Millions took advantage of the deals on offer to shop for themselves, for friends and for family. Shopping for children can be particularly challenging, with parents often succumbing to incessant nagging. However, gifts can provide great value in a child's education, if selected carefully. As Business Insider explains, some gifts can teach children the value of money, which may help develop the next generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders. How do you teach your children the value of money?

An article from Business Insider provides some gift ideas that can teach kids the value of money:

Coin keepers

For kids that need more hands-on learning, a fun place to keep money might teach good saving habits more quickly.

There’s the traditional ceramic piggy bank (which can be an arts project too, if you pick a plain one) but also ATMs for kidsmoney mazes, and cash registers.

Digital coin counters that display a balance may be less fun but offer more encouragement since the growth in savings is always visible. There are also a variety of “three-jar” coin savers like the Moonjar, which encourage kids to split their money into different categories: save, spend, and share.

Investment

What about presents for teens? If you have older kids earning (reported) income of their own, you might start funding an IRA for them. You can only contribute as much as they earn, but Roth IRAs for kids can be easily set up. Add $1,500 a year and, as Stacy mentioned, in 50 years this could be a gift worth a million dollars.

Even for younger kids, investing is an option. Buy them a share of stock in something they like – their favorite video game company, restaurant, or retailer – through a site like OneShare or ShareBuilder, and teach them how to monitor their investment.

Another idea? Start saving for college with a 529 plan, a gift that can eventually offer a broader education. Most plans have much higher contribution limits than an IRA – many over $200,000, according to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission – and are cheaper to get started too. Check out Savingforcollege.com, which has tons of information and options.

These probably aren’t gifts that will have your kids jumping for joy on Christmas, but hopefully they lead to greater happiness later in life — and you can always mix in the educational gifts with the exciting ones. Looking for other tips on being a money mentor? Check out 7 Creative Ways to Teach Kids About Money.

Read more here.

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