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Teaching kids healthy money habits

Father and son in a kitchen, explaining dollar bills and cents

Developing a good relationship with money starts at a young age

Start the conversation early

Kids as young as five or six years old can learn money lessons. Teach them what each coin and paper currency is worth. When shopping, let them buy something they want in order to practice exchanging money.

Teach the three S's: Save, share & spend

Help kids divide their money into “save,” “share” and “spend” categories. Use piggy banks, envelopes or get crafty by decorating glass jars. Have them consider the following questions: who do I want to share my money with? What do I want to save my money for? What are the things I want most and how much do they cost?

Discuss the difference between wants versus needs

Help your children identify things they need to live (food, shelter) and the things that are nice to have (toys, vacations). If they want to buy a big-ticket item, encourage them to save for it.

Show the value of giving

Share your money values by modeling the importance of giving to others. Save money, maybe in a jar or a piggy bank, as a family for a cause you all care about and get involved with community events that support it.