Teach Your Own Children to Save

Whenever you teach a child something, you also learn a lot about the subject yourself.

So, one way to learn more about money and saving is to help your own children learn about money.

The younger your children are, the easier it will be for them to accept what you’re teaching them. You can start teaching your children about money as young as age 4, and you should definitely be teaching them by age 12. By age 13, many children have already developed their own (usually poor) money habits that will be difficult to change.

The typical approach to teaching children about money is to dole out a small sum each week. However, this practice actually just teaches children how to spend, not how to save or make responsible financial choices.

Instead, consider giving your children more money less often, and let them make their own decisions about whether to spend this money or save it. The sooner your children learn how to handle money responsibly, the better prepared they will be when they are on their own.

“Money and You: Financial Literacy Program” is a program to help preschoolers through second grade learn about money basics, allowances, savings and responsible spending. It’s free and available here: http://www.modern-woodmen.org/MemberBenefits/YouthPrograms/YouthEducationalPrograms/Pages/FinancialLiteracyProgram.aspx

There are some excellent online resources that can help you teach your own children about money:

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Tom Copeland

I've been the nation's leading trainer, author, and advocate on the business of family child care since 1981. I'm a licensed attorney and have presented hundreds of business workshops for family child care providers across the country. I answer thousands of calls and emails each year to help providers, tax professionals and trainers understand complex business and tax issues. Call me at 651-280-5991. Email me at tomcopeland@live.com. Visit me on Facebook. From 1981 to 2009 I worked at Resources for Child Caring in Minnesota (now called Think Small), where I was director of Redleaf National Institute for 15 years. I've written nine books on the business of family child care published by Redleaf Press, a division of Resources for Child Caring. I was on the board of directors of First Children's Finance, a non-profit organization providing low interest loans and consulting and technical assistance to help family child care providers suceed as a business. They operate in Minnesota, Iowa, Michigan, North and South Dakota, Kansas, Missouri, and Texas. Here are some YouTube videos of me talking about my work with this organization and the business of family child care. I graduated from Macalester College (BA) in 1972 and from William Mitchell College of Law (JD) in 1980. I live in St. Paul, Minnesota with my wife Diane and two cats, Duke and Ella.