Did you know that April is Credit Union Youth Month? It’s never too early to start educating your children about money and good financial habits.
- Even young children can learn about different types of money and savings. Show them different bills and coins and explain each have a dollar amount. They may want to sort coins into stacks.
- Make it fun. Set up a play store or café and have them use fake money to make change. Explain in simple terms concepts of earning and spending money.
- Open a basic savings for your child and encourage them to save a portion of gifts or allowance.
- Start discussing short-term and long-term goals. Encourage your child to set a goal and to think of ways that they can earn money to reach that goal.
- Teach your tween the basics like how to balance a checkbook and read a credit card
- Discuss budgeting and have your tween set a budget and savings plan for things that they want. Regularly review and talk about their budget.
- Talk to your child about making smart money choices. In a time where it is so easy to ‘buy now,’ encourage your tween to think carefully about how they spend their money.
- Talk about protecting their personal information and identity theft. At this point they may have a mobile device or use social media apps. Monitor their usage and explain the importance of not sharing information.
- Have family money discussions with your teen – let them see how you manage and pay bills and budget household expenses. You may even want to let them access their Credit Union account in Online or Mobile Banking.
- Talk about investing but keep it simple. If you buy stocks or bonds, show them how it works and how you can track earnings and losses.
- This is when kids start thinking about working or may have a job. Talk about taxes, debt and credit history and scores.
- Remember, even though you may have talked to them about budgets, savings and other basic financial topics, keep reinforcing these concepts as your children get older and you add on more complex topics.