To SAVE or to SPEND | How to go about raising teens that value what they have, value money so that they grow up to be mindful consumers as well as givers.
- Who amongst us has started giving pocket money to kids?
- How many of you have said NO to an iPhone demand already?
- Or Are you still saying, this imported chocolate is like buying 10 dairy milks
Then, it is time to go over some very basic yet highly effective ways to teach value of money to our kids. I feel, every Indian parent can use this effective technique to inculcate good money management habits in teens and not sound preachy.
I read this beautiful note from Bill Gates few years back that is brilliant and to the point, read this word by word.
Bill Gates, the world’s richest man says that he doesn’t want to shower his children with money so they only rely on the generosity of their parents. He believes that this could cause them to “do nothing” and simply expect a life of luxury without putting in the hard work.
I think most of us agree to this! The sooner parents starttalking about money matters, the better off kids will be in terms of being mindful consumers as well as givers.
Wouldn’t life be so easy if we could just tell this to our kids and they listened. More importantly understood. Right, but it doesn’t work like that in “Kidszania”, the world of kids. So, you see where I am getting?
You know what it’s like. You must have told them a 100 times already, look that one frappe cost 450 bucks, but does it help? Like ever? No, because they aren’t really counting the money from their limited budget and paying. NOW that’s important. Have you tried what happens when you get them to pay for themselves? Yeah, do I see you smiling now !
So how to get our kids to learn the value of money? Let’s understand what are some Simple tips to teach children to save and I am going to be sharing my story or rather experiences of how I go about setting goals for my teen, tracking spends and savings, leaving room for mistakes. I will also share a list of books to read together in my next post.
Also read, How To Explain To Kids about LGBT in simple words, Why use Menstrual Cups for Travel and Backpacking What Nita Ambani Has To Say About The Teenage Novelist Zuni Chopra & 31 Best Hindi Movies for Kids to Practice Hindi
Money Management For Teens
I set a goal that makes my child to want to save
Start by pulling the plug on open line of credit for your child. Then set a goal, such as buying a new gizmo, like a wave board. Make sure it’s not very expensive. This way they can accumulate the savings in achievable timeframe, and not get frustrated for months so as to lose interest.
Create three Jars
Every time your child receives money from grandpa, aunts or on birthdays, divide them in in pre-agreed proportions for each of the jars labelled – Save, Spend, Share. You child can use the spending jar for small purchases like cookies or candies. Have her use the saving jar for buying items that are part of the goal and the share jar goes towards a cause, to someone needy. Remember we want to raise mindful consumers as well as givers.
I have them track savings and spends
Children love to win. They love to see themselves moving closer to the end game. So, have them count the money. Now this is important, so read this carefully.
Have them count the money in each of the jars, every time they make a deposit. It’s fun for the kids. Encourage them to write down their purchases when making a withdrawal so that they can reflect back on how they are spending their allowance. It can actually be an eye opener for the child, agree right? They learn to make diligent choices about how to spend their money.
All of these activities add up to teach the kids, importance of waiting and being patient, a very crucial life lesson which children otherwise find very difficult to learn.
I ALWAYS leave a little room for mistakes
It may be very tempting for you to stop the kids at times, while making certain purchases but try to step back. Let them make expenses, independently and allow some room for mistakes. Once they run short of money, they’ll understand it better what not to do with their kitty.
Role play “Wants vs Needs” | Sharing my own money experiences
This definitely is the most important learning you will impact to your child while making her understand the value of money. Make sure you make it interesting. Share your own family budget. Be open about it. Explain the expenses that are used for needs such as food, utility bills, healthcare and wants such as travel, movie outings or dining out. Classify your electronics and gadgets into needs and wants again.
When you are shopping with your child encourage her to be part of the saving game. There is a lot of discovery for the child, she will learn how to find the right items, compare prices and most importantly distinguish the needs from the wants.
Final thoughts on money management for Indian teens
A sense of freedom can REALLY boost understanding in teens and openness will surely encourage conversation. Make sure to also admit your own mistakes openly, it might help them avoid making the same mistakes one day.
What is the right age to start talking about money matters?
The sooner parents starttalking about money matters, the better off kids will be in terms of being mindful consumers as well as givers.
BTW, how much money should you give to a 13 year old as pocket money – 100, 200, 500 or more! Write to me in the comments below.
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