It’s Healthy And Smart To Talk To Your Kids About Money
Sometimes I wish I could be a kid all over again. I might appreciate it more the second time around.
Instead, I have good fun watching children learn, laugh, explore and grow. My 9 year old niece is a budding artist and my 7 year old nephew, a whiz with computers. When did kids get so smart? They’re like sponges ready to soak up everything you throw at them.
Do you talk to your kids about money? It’s not an easy subject to discuss even for responsible, capable adults. Many families I know don’t venture near it. And, some that do, have a tough time staying calm, patient and rational. Why can money bring out the worst in us?
I was excited to read that today is BMO’s annual Talk With Our Kids About Money Day. I’m sure my own twenty something kids are rolling their eyes. You see, I’ve been told over the years that I talk too much about this subject. Have I gone overboard with my son and daughter? Maybe so, but wouldn’t it be thrilling if even a few tidbits sunk in?
It’s better to talk about money and do the best you can rather than avoid it altogether. Your kids are watching whether you like it or not.
What did they learn from you and your husband’s last argument over the credit card bill? What about your recent large or visible purchases- new golf clubs, a vacation to Greece or a new gas furnace for your home? What do you do when your teenager asks for money for yet another night out with his friends? Are your own values well represented in the way you spend (or save) money?
Money touches most aspects of our lives. It’s a shame that personal finance education is still not mandatory in all schools. Studies show that those who learn how to handle money wisely (especially from a young age) lead happier, more successful lives (regardless of how much they earn).
It’s hard being a parent and even harder to talk about money in an age-appropriate way. Check out a few of these excellent resources for tips and tools to get you started;
1) Talk With Our Kids About Money– Free on-line learning resources and tools (from Canadian Foundation For Economic Education (CFEE) and BMO)
2) A Parent’s Guide To Raising Money-Smart Kids– Easy and excellent read full of ideas, discussion tips and great examples (from CPA and Financial Literacy Consultant, Robin Taub)
3) Money & Kids– A good list of on-line games and teaching tips (from the Family Education Network/ Pearson Education Inc.)
It’s never too early or late to start talking to our kids about money! Let’s all do it more than once a year. If we weave these discussions into everyday life, the impact will be ever-lasting. Unlike my own kids, I hope yours won’t know what hit them.
Good luck and start talking today!
Proud founder of this blog Let’s Talk About Money, Patricia Gass, CPA, CA, provides personal finance coaching and education to improve your money skills. Follow her on linkedin, twitter or pinterest
Photo courtesy of riskmanagment365.com