It’s Christmas and New Year’s, so chances are you’re going to be spending more time at home than at the office. When you are at home, you have to deal with parenting responsibilities, and one of them is just teaching your kids to budget. If you just finished taking care of the year end accounting at work and setting up your budget for next year, you will be adept at budgeting right.
BUT teaching kids is a whole other ball game. Here’s how you do it right.
Why should they budget?
Whether your children ask you or not, you should answer this question for them. If you don’t, then they might not really see the use of budgeting. So here is what you do.
Sit Down with Them
Grab a pen, paper, a coloring set and sit down with your child. The best way to teach them is by showing them. Get them to list down their allowance and all their needs and wants. Next, help them out with the division.
Take a step back, let them complete the sheet first, and then sit down with them and provide feedback.
Go Grocery Shopping
Next time you go grocery shopping for New Year’s don’t let them just tag along, let your children help you with the budget. Hands-on experience is often the best teacher. Tell them your budget and what needs to be bought for your household. Then, at the grocery store, let them make suggestions on what to pick up and what not to pick up.
Teach According to their Age
Don’t teach a 15 year old how to budget like a 10 year old, and don’t teach a 10 year old to budget like a 15 year old. Get the age part wrong and your children may either be frustrated with you for treating them like a kid, or they’re unable to understand what you’re teaching.
Always account for your children ‘s age when you are teaching.
Make it a Habit
Every month or every week, sit down with your children and budget with them. The more they do it, the better they get. More importantly, by making it a habit, they will always be on top of their financial situation.
And, hey, don’t panic. Let your kids make their own mistakes, there is only so much you can teach them. If your child wants to blow away all the money on a toy, let him. The harder you push budgeting on them, the more they will run away from it.
At the end of the day, your children will be better prepared to face the world, and if one of them becomes an accountant, they’ll be a darn good one!