As a parent, it’s your first duty to teach kids financial literacy for their future. Typically, financial literacy is not a subject that is commonly addressed within the math curriculum. Instead, math classes focus on mathematical equations and theorems such as Pythagoras and trigonometry. But how important is it to learn financial literacy in real life?
In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of financial literacy and how we can teach our kids about financial management.
What is financial literacy?
Financial literacy involves understanding and possessing the necessary abilities to manage one’s finances, establish and adhere to a budget, and make sound investments. It forms the very foundation of our monetary dealings, and it’s a journey that continues throughout our lives.
Starting our financial education at an early stage can be the foundation of our success. It’s a known fact that when it comes to finances, education is the catalyst that can unlock prosperity.
Lack of financial literacy can result in various pitfalls, including the potential to accumulate unsustainable debt due to uninformed spending choices or inadequate long-term planning. Such a situation can lead to unfavorable outcomes such as poor credit, bankruptcy, housing foreclosure, and other related consequences.
Why is financial literacy necessary for kids?
At a first, glance, discussing money with young children may appear too early or futile, but in reality, children tend to be more observant than we realize. They observe our actions and attitudes and often emulate them.
The more frequently we initiate money-related discussions with our children from an early age, the greater the likelihood they will develop a sound understanding of financial management. Here are a few reasons why starting to teach kids financial literacy when they are young can be valuable.
● Make them financially confident adult
Numerous adults nowadays face difficulties managing their finances effectively. For instance, half of Americans need a savings account with at least $400 to cover unexpected financial emergencies. Educating children on financial management early on can help establish habits that can lead to healthier relationships with money as they grow older.
Life as an adult can be unpredictable, and despite being prepared for unforeseen expenses, sudden and unexpected costs such as a $500 car or house repair can appear out of nowhere.
By engaging in activities that allow them to save, spend, and give, children learn how to plan for their future finances. Starting these financial habits at an early age increases the likelihood that children will continue to apply them as they transition into adulthood.
● Understanding the difference between needs and wants
As adults, we tend to have a clear understanding of the distinction between our needs, such as necessities like food, shelter, and clothing, and our wants, such as luxury items like expensive vacations or the latest technology.
However, it can be relatively easy for tweens and teens to confuse a want with a need. To teach kids financial literacy, we need to learn how to balance their needs and wants without incurring debt. With knowledge of financial literacy kids can differentiate between needs and wants as well as would be more concerned about budgeting.
● Teaching kids the value of money:
As a parent, you probably thought that money is a leaf that grows in trees at some point. Unless your teen is set to inherit a trust fund, they will most likely have to work for their money.
While younger kids can earn pocket money by doing chores, as they enter their tweens, many start earning their income by babysitting, dog walking, mowing lawns, or undertaking other small jobs.
By teaching your children financial literacy, you can help them make intelligent money choices that will benefit them in the long term. This foundation can help them make better financial decisions with more significant returns in the future.
● Practicing financial independence
When it comes to financial empowerment, allowing your tween or teen to manage their own money is critical. By allowing them to make choices about what they buy and how much they spend, you’re setting them up for financial success in the future.
● Teaching them to avoid debt
As a parent, you may worry about your teen’s financial independence, especially regarding credit cards. However, having honest conversations with your teen about credit is essential to teach kids financial literacy.
It’s important to emphasize that a credit card is not free money and that each purchase must be paid monthly to avoid interest and prevent accumulating debt. By educating your teen about credit, they’ll be able to make informed financial decisions and build healthy financial habits for the future.
How to teach kids financial literacy?
Having financial literacy means managing your money effectively, allocating your income wisely, and avoiding financial debt, often by prioritizing savings. This knowledge helps you to make informed decisions about your financial life. You have the power to shape your financial future and make important financial choices that will have lasting benefits with the power of financial literacy.
So here are some tips for teaching your kids about financial literacy:
- Motivate your child to find a part-time employment opportunity.
- Teach your kids to repay their loans by themselves
- Provide financial games and literature as gifts to help them improve their financial literacy.
- Express to your kids the topic of financial struggles and their importance.
- Motivate them to make a budget and save some cash from their pocket money.
At some point in your life as an adult, you may have faced the negative outcomes of not managing your money well, such as falling behind on rent or accumulating credit card debt. To prevent your children from making the same mistakes, it’s important to start teaching them about financial literacy early on.
By doing so, they will be better prepared to handle their finances as they grow older and avoid similar financial challenges.
Creating good money habits is not something that just happens by chance, it is a skill that needs to be taught. Starting at a young age will give your kids the tools they need to manage their finances when they become adults, especially when there is a lot more money at play.