Personal finance experts suggest that parents should
teach their kids about money. They want parents to talk to their
kids about earning, spending, investing, saving, borrowing and sharing.
In fact, the experts advise parents that the earlier
they start, the better. Robert Duvall, president and CEO of the
National Council on Economic Education, says a majority of practices
can begin as early as preschool.
"We need to get to young people as early as
possible," he says. "We don't wait until a young person
gets her or his first job to teach them how to read. Why do we want
to wait until they are in the working world to teach them some basics
about managing their money? Because often it's too late."
The experts have provided 10 ways for you to help
your children understand and appreciate the value of a dollar:
1. Talk with your children while
shopping at a grocery store or in the mall.
Express your thoughts when you compare prices and quality when shopping
for school supplies or holiday and birthday gifts.
2. Take your kids to the bank.
Whether you are taking out money from the ATM or heading inside
the bank to cash a check, talk with your kids about what you are
doing. Teach them how money can be earned by not taking it out of
the bank account.
3. Talk with your kids about investments.
Purchase stock in companies of products that they know. Experts
say you can start in elementary school, but it might be more meaningful
in middle school.
"Too many people have suffered losses -- by
not diversifying, for example -- that could have been avoided with
a little information and education," says Steve Hines, spokesman
for the JumpStart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy. "But,
stocks generally outperform other forms of investment over longer
periods of time, and since kids have time on their side, why not
help them learn to make their money grow?"
4. Create a spending account,
and provide your kids with a piggy bank.
Give your children an allowance and make sure they set aside a certain
amount for savings. A piggy bank can help children watch their money
grow. Let them keep a financial journal to record their financial
5. Make them work for their money.
Money doesn't grow on trees, so teach your kids to earn their money.
They can start by picking up their toys, taking out the garbage
and raking the leaves.
6. Help them to establish savings
Goal-setting can help kids aspire to achieve their dreams. So whether
the goal is a toy, bicycle or a car, help them to learn that it
can be attained by saving and working.