An article titiled, Give the Baby a Bottle and a Bank Account, plus the upcoming holiday shopping craze, really got me thinking. Our kids are busy with Santa's lists and asking for this and that and more! For some families, it isn't only this time of year. Some kids want it all, all the time!
I started to wonder if we have a plan on how to teach our boys the value of money and saving? The article suggests that children as young as the age of four should start being included in conversations regarding family money, budgets and other financial decisions. Our oldest is about to turn seven and we are guilty of not doing any of the above. I definitely see the advantages of starting now (well, maybe after the holidays).
My first thought was to turn to what kids love: a little screen time. I found these fun and educational apps to help start the conversation in the home. Some are as simple as teaching young children what money is and its value and others go as far as helping your child break down percentages of allowances to go to different accounts, including giving money to charity. Apps can be a great educational tool and if kids already have the tablets, have them use them for good too!
Just Saving My Money-Little Critter $1.99 Here at Mommy Maestra, we love books! Hurray for this interactive one! The best way to get started with money introduction and conversation is to read about it. This app is also perfect for the youngest members in your family. Critter, the popular book character, wants to buy a skateboard and little readers will go on a journey with him to help him earn money and save.
Kids Money Free This app is perfect for the basics in saving and spending. Your child can create a wish list, insert the cost of a product, and based on allowance or gift money, the app will help teach how much money and time will be needed to purchase their item. It teaches easy math concepts like adding and subtracting.
KidsBank Free-$2.99 Found under the "finance" category in iTunes, KidsBank means business. Targeted to ages four and up, this app is super specific, which I found to be a great money management tool. Parents can help children earn interest, track deposits and withdrawals and even email and print account statements.
My Make it Count Free Parents will love for their kids to start looking at spending habits and this app offers just that. It's a simple, "money-in, money-out" concept but it's cute and might be a good first app to try. Another perk? A French language option is available on the app!
Earn This Save That: Allowance, Chores, Banks, Goals & Rewards $2.99 Another serious app for parents who are ready to teach their children what it takes to make money and budget it all. A little bit more kid friendly than KidsBank (with its accounts), Earn This Save That has "banks" instead. I love that they both have an option for charity but this one has time earnings too. What kid doesn't beg for extra screen time? Now they can see how time can be earned as well.
Betty Galvan, is helping her readers "find the positive and seek the benefits" over at her blog, MyFriendBettySays.com.