Teaching kids about money

April 4, 2011
Today I have a guest, Stephanie from Always Just a Mom, who will be sharing how our children can become financially responsible starting at a young age. She uses Financial Peace University, JR.  Its from the teachings of Dave Ramsey.  I love this!! Thanks so much for the great tips Stephanie. 🙂
Stephanies post…
Many of you know that we participated in FPU this summer and that I am co-coordinating a class right now. Well they have this program out there, FPU Jr., to help kids (as early as 3) learn the importance of giving, saving and spending. Well…I was all about getting this for String Bean and Biscuit and I let my mom know (who was the reason we all got hooked on FPU!). For Christmas we got FPU Jr! It’s awesome!!!  We had not really thought about really getting into FPU Jr. for awhile but it was on special for $10.00!  Then last week String Bean decided he needed not one, not two, but THREE new Thomas the Train “Friends”.  We need to get Toby, Percy and Edward (Percy was already purchased by  mom a few weeks ago for the Easter basket!) and well these little guys aren’t cheap.  We thought…perfect we’ll start with the basics!  SAVE FOR WHAT YOU WANT!
So I pulled out our super cool FPU Jr. Box.  Seriously Dave Ramsey has a rockin’ marketing team…I love how their products come in these super cool boxes with all sorts of fun stuff!!!
So there is a lot of fun stuff in the box including a disk that has information for both parents and kiddos.  An Instruction Manual, which also includes a “Quick-Start Guide”, and a commission worksheet, saving to buy with cash, calculator & magnets, child’s envelop system and a clip-n-carry coin case.  In the picture above these are the meat of the kit, in my opinion, the envelop system, the commission worksheet and the saving to busy with cash worksheet.

Both worksheets come with a dry erase marker as they are laminated!
Ok…so as you can see on the cover of the box it is for 3-12 year old kiddos.  Well…as much as I would like to think my 3 year old is going to get all this…we’ve adapted this for our home.  It is still a little too advanced for our 3 1/2 year old (who I do believe is the most intelligent 3 1/2 year old EVER…but come on!).
We’ve created a “Chore Chart” and our kiddo works on Commission (we love the idea of COMMISSION and not allowance!!!):

He has four chores he must do each day:  Make his Bed, Clean up his Toys(this is when asked), take his medicine without a fight, and feed the dog.  Since we started this on Monday his little brother (who is 2 1/2) has decided he also wants chores because he saw String Bean getting money!  So…he gets some coins when he makes his bed and helps clean up the toys.
We will be using the envelop system once he has some money saved up.  We are currently paying WHEN the chore is completed.  This is how Dave explained it in FPU.  With little guys you gotta reward them immediately, so that is what I am doing.  I tell him to make his bed after breakfast, he gets one reminder and then if I have to go do it…no quarter (yup…he gets a quarter per chore/$1.00 a day/$7.00 a week…inflation is not my friend).  I made a couple cute little banks for the kiddos to keep the coins in:


Not the best picture…but you get the idea….Crystal Light container, some ribbon I put through my X and some sticky letters!!!  I of course had to make one for Biscuit…his is actually a wee bit cuter…but well that’s usually how crafts happen…first time is your tester!
Ok…so the top has a small slot in it for their coins.  We figure this first time around we’ll save money for a train, go to the store and let him purchase the train with HIS money.  Then…we are going to plan to add the giving portion of this game.  String Bean is a VERY giving child and we want him to see that when he works hard he is rewarded (lesson 1) but we also want him to understand that when we have more we need to give.  We will introduce either another bank “The Giving Bank” or use the envelops…we haven’t decided because we’ve got coins and not bills and well the envelops will work great for the bills…but we’re not done with our Debt Snowball yet…so bills aren’t making an appearance yet!  We’ll continue to give you updates on how String Bean is doing and when we are able to purchase a train and move on to the Giving Bank!!!
At the core of FPU is to change your family tree.  It’s not just about getting rich but about making changes to make life better in the long run.  Our hope is that our children will NEVER go through the same financial challenges we’ve gone through because we were impatient, impulsive and immature adults!  We also feel that since we’re doing FPU as a family it is a lifestyle that everyone will understand and appreciate.   ~Stephanie

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7 comments on “Teaching kids about money

  1. Becky B. says:

    Thanks, Toni!

    Becky B.
    Organizing Made Fun

  2. fantastic! i am going to start this with my almost 4 year old! i think money strategies should be taught in school!

  3. I LOVE THAT CHORE CHART… it would go so nicely with my brightly colored command center! WHERE did you get it? Is it part of the Dave Ramsey kit?

  4. These are great suggestions! This is a constant struggle around here when it comes to “I want, I want, I want; daddy has money”…This system looks like a great way to organize it all so kids can understand! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Di (not Dee) says:

    Wonderful! My daughter is still too young, but I’m going to bookmark this for the future.

  6. Emily S says:

    We just started with our son too. I’m really excited to teach our little guy about money principles that I wish I had learned as a kid though. My only thought though is that $7 is an awful lot for a kid that young. Might I suggest using dimes instead of quarters? And dimes are a lot easier to tithe off of and save from since they are multiples of 10. Good luck and have fun!

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