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When Kids Want to Earn Money – Teaching by Example

by Tina on March 15, 2012
category: 5 – 12 years (kid)

Your kids observe the use of money from an early age and want to be able to use it themselves. Teaching them about the importance of money and the exchange of money for goods is a lesson that starts long before they enter school. Children learn quickly about what money is and what it is used for. Before long they want money of their own so they can purchase things that they want to have such as candy and toys. Children also observe the gift giving process at special occasions such as Christmas time and birthdays and want to be able to have some money to take part in this as well.

Off to the Right Start

As a mother you should not be frightened or bothered when you child wants to earn money of his own but you should feel a sense of pride. Everyone must start somewhere when it comes to the use of money and one place that is good for youngsters to start is selling glasses of juice or lemonade for a few cents from a homemade stand that you set up for you child in the front yard. You can oversee the whole process and it can serve as a valuable lesson for your son or daughter.

Another small way to teach your young child about money is if you child wants to sell something that he owns to another child in order to have money to buy something else that he wants even more. You have to make sure that the trade is fair for both children but it serves as a means of teaching your child about how money works.

Whenever you child expresses to you that he or she wants to buy something, whether it be a toy truck, a Barbie doll, a coloring book or an electronic gadget this offers an opportunity to teach you son or daughter about the value of money and about the responsible use of money.

Financial Lessons for Children

You need to teach your little one that money must be earned. Your child learns this by example when he observes you going to work every day or observes you working at home if you run a small business from your residence. You need him to realize that hard work is needed to earn money, as is commitment, energy and lots of effort. Make sure that the money lessons you impart are age appropriate. You do not want to confuse or overwhelm your child when he or she is too young to understand the concepts involving money.

When you give your child an allowance for doing chores around the house this demonstrates how money works and it provides a solid foundation for the equation hard work equals money earned. You need for him to realize that earning money becomes more complicated as you get older and earning a living for a family is different than just having some spending money for the weekend. Once again though, make sure that the financial lessons are suitable for your child’s age.

Talk About Money with Kids

Talk to your child about money and make yourself available to answer any questions he may have. If there are opportunities to get him involved in your money making endeavors then do so. For instance if you are involved in a church or group that has bake sales then let your child join in with helping you bake cookies, cupcakes or muffins. If you help out at book sales or other sales to raise money for good causes then bring your son or daughter along to see how this takes place. You may not be earning the money yourself but when you do this you show him that charitable giving and earning money to help others makes a difference as well.

3 Responses to When Kids Want to Earn Money – Teaching by Example

  • Gravatar
    Comment by Stephanie
    March 16, 2012 @ 3:22 pm

    My oldest and I are working on a project to earn enough money to take the family to Disneyland next year. We’ve only just begun, but I hope to do really well at it with her, so she gets a good lesson from it. If it doesn’t work out well, she’ll learn just how hard it is to earn money sometimes, also a good lesson.

  • Gravatar
    Comment by Donation Can
    March 20, 2012 @ 5:49 pm

    Growing up my Dad was a hard working coal miner and factory worker. My first job was at 13 baby sitting, then at 16 I was a cashier and at 18 a nurse’s aide. I worked hard in high school and purchased my first car (an $800 Grand Am), paid for gas and insurance, bought my own clothes and took care of myself. Today, I’m extremely independent and doing better financially than most of my peers who were handed everything.

    I agree with talking to your kids about money. Money is a taboo subject to most people but it’s something we have to talk about.

  • Gravatar
    Comment by mystepmomlife
    June 28, 2012 @ 4:53 pm

    I moved out of my mom’s house while still in high school. I worked 2 jobs and went to high school, supporting myself completely on my own. What I see with my 2 teenage step-children is that they want everything given to them with very little effort done on their part. We only give them money when they do chores. If they want to do something with their friends or buy something extra (video games, candy, etc) they have to do chores before we will hand over a dollar. We often get complaints because we are the parents it is our “job” to buy them things. I reply with it is our job to teach them how to take care of themselves and that money doesn’t grow in the backyard. It has to be earned.

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