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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

Tips for moms on teaching kids about money



Despite the stereotype, it is mothers who are increasingly taking the lead in teaching kids about money, and they are particularly influential in shaping their daughters’ approach to finances, according to a Citibank survey.

The survey found that U.S. women cited their mother most often (29 percent), followed by their spouse/partner (27 percent) and father (25 percent), as the person who taught them the most about personal finances. Mom’s financial influence is even more evident among single and younger women: 36 percent of women ages 18-39 and 43 percent of single women named their mother as the biggest influence in their views on money.

That's why Citibank's Women & Co., a financial resource site, offers these tips for moms on how to teach kids about money:

Use everyday activities as teaching tools:  Talking about money doesn’t require a formal discussion around the table. Trips to the grocery store can teach children how to plan what they want to buy in advance and make price comparisons. The library helps introduce the concept of borrowing. Classic board games like Monopoly can be a springboard for basic lessons in real estate, taxes and general finance.

Lead by example: Take children along when you save, donate and invest. Open a savings account for them at your local bank and take them with you to make deposits. 

Show them the results:  Start a family fund that will be put toward a common goal such as a vacation, gift or a specific charity that family members would like to support. Let the whole family experience the positive end results of saving and budgeting.

Don’t say things are OK when they are not  Children can sense when something isn’t right. Take time to explain issues to your children in an age appropriate way. 

Don’t hide your money mistakes: Set a good example for your kids by being open about your own mistakes.

Give them room to grow: Give them experiences in all aspects of money: saving, spending, borrowing, and earning, and allow them to make mistakes of their own.  It’s better for them to learn now when the risks are small.

Now it's your turn readers. What are some of your tips for teaching kids about money?

--Sharon Kennedy Wynne

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[Last modified: Friday, March 25, 2011 12:00pm]


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