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Having Fun With a Kids Budget

Having Fun With a Kids Budget

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAIt is our duty to teach about how a children budget works and how money works in our society. If we start earlier, our kids will understand earlier. We start teaching our kids from the time they start pointing at things (about 9 month’s olds) if they are allow to have what they want. The reason is because we are responsible for their well-being. When kids grow to about two years old, they are known for “terrible twos” because tantrums usually get them what they want (if we give in to them) or they have learnt the all important word “NO” from us.

Young kids these days comprehend how to get what they want and understand why moms and dads won’t give them, I think it is only wise of us as parents to not disregard our kids potential to understand money and how it works in our everyday life.

The common saying “One dollar for every age” is the general rule-of-thumb for pocket money. For a children budget, it doesn’t need to be difficult to understand. Kids don’t have to pay bills so up to about age 11, kids budget is focusing on what they receive and what they do with it. When they start elementary school, it would be wise to have a children budget drawn up for them. At these times, parents should start educate children about saving. Teaching children about saving is critical for later life. We as adults are so busy focusing on paying the bills we ourselves don’t always prioritize savings. The rich men in the world will always tell you “pay yourself first”. A simple principle of paying yourself first, if applied early in life will lead to great success for your child.

Budgeting for kids should be implemented in a way that is visually attractive to the kids with lots of color and pictures, and of course fun doing it. Make sure your kids get to design the layout of the budget with grids for the days of the week and money descriptions with pictures example a piggy bank for savings, picture of mum and dad for the allowance, books, toys, food, gifts and donations.

Savings in a kids budget should be around 10% of allowance. Take them shopping to pick out their piggy bank. Encourage them to put 10% into the piggy bank first when you give them their allowance for the week. Before you give them the next week’s allowance encourage them to put in the remaining unused cash they have before the next week’s allowance is given. This will teach them about living within their means. At the end of a month you can count the savings together and then take it to the bank to deposit into their bank account so it can accumulate interest. This will educate them about compound interest and will encourage them to put more into the bank.

When it is meal time speak to your child about what they have chosen to use their allowance for and also the topic of budgeting for kids. Make sure you always offer positive encouragement when your child has made a poor decision. If they bought more chocolate with their money and ended up with a tummy ache, explain to them to think about this experience before they choose to repeat the process. Alternatively if they saw a toy they wanted to buy but have come short in cash because they used their money for something else, teach them about patience and have them wait for their next allowance. It’s not wise to pull out extra cash to buy them something they want straight away as this teaches them nothing about responsibility.

During those special times in the year you can encourage your child to save more, for example during their birthdays, or Christmas time. A month prior you may encourage your child to save by matching their savings or doubling it. This can be an attractive draw card for them when they know they have more to gain than the afternoon snack that week.

Wise parenting must involve teaching our kids about money. Budgeting for kids is very important to the health of their financial future.

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  1. We were taught from a very young age that if our parents didn’t have the money in the bank or cash on hand to pay for something we didn’t have it. Food, medical expenses, utility charges, mortgage, rates & taxes etc. came first. Annual school and stationery, uniforms etc. had to be saved for. Necessary clothing including shoes suitable for school. Petrol for shopping (Mum shopped for food once a fortnight when Dad got paid, paid the bills and banked some of the surplus cash). She also took elderly relatives who were unable to drive to do their shopping (at the same shops), go to the bank etc. at the same time. Dad did some of the cement paths himself. They would buy cement one pay, wait a month or so then buy sand and gravel. If they bought both of them at the same time the saved on delivery fees. If we went out on the occasional picnic Mum would make and pack all our food, drinks etc. It was very rare we had takeway of any description – fish & chips. The only thing they ever really owed money for was the house mortgage which Mum mostly was able to pay a little bit extra each month. My brother and I played sports for a local church – far cheaper than other teams and I am sure we had just as much fun. That was part of our fitness and entertainment watching each other play.
    These days, Adults and children want too much luxury new stuff and often don’t want to save for it first. Not a good example to teach our children. It is too easy to use credit cards and get into financial trouble.
    I will always be grateful to my parents for teaching us to save up to buy things we wanted which sometimes made us think about whether we needed or just wanted at thing.
    She also managed to save enough for us to have a budgeted for short holiday once a year or sometimes every second year.

  2. I forgot to mention she did it on one wage – not a higly paid one either..Many trademen even those who have done apprenticeships and extra studies ( after hours at their own cost) get lower wages than many office workers, basic clerks get paid as much in many cases. Mum didn’t work after my brother and I were born as she was looking after us or our grandparents or elderly relatives who had nobody else to check on them if any of us we got sick. Between us we kept her busy at times.


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