If you’re a parent, then I’m sure your kids have kindly asked you to buy them something when out shopping. When I say “kindly asked”, I mean more like they drew the attention of everyone in the store to themselves as they threw themselves to the floor and kicked and screamed.
You’re not the only one to experience that. It’s hard to tell them that the toy isn’t in the budget and that you don’t have an endless supply of cash to buy them whatever they want. You can even try telling them that if you buy that shiny new toy that it means you won’t have the money to go to Disney World.
It won’t work. They just don’t understand.
So what are you to do? It’s time to be that awful parent who makes their kids buy stuff with their own money, especially when it’s the type of stuff you expect to find under their bed a week after they take it home.
Our oldest child, 7, has gotten into making rainbow loom bracelets, rings and more. She even got the idea that she wanted to start selling them.
So when we had a garage sale about a month ago, we set up a stand for her to sell her bracelets. She set the prices (although I had to talk her down from her $10/bracelet), created a display, and made signs. It went so well that she ended up having to bring out more halfway through the sale.
Her younger sister, 4, sold bottles of water. Both of them pulled in over $10 each if I remember correctly.
The real success was that they both learned that to spend money, they have to make money. In order to make it, they have to offer something that other people are willing to pay for.
It’s one thing to tell them they have to buy things with their own money, but if they don’t see the other side of the equation then they’ll just assume that they’ll never be able to buy anything they want. Hopefully, long after the money is gone, hopefully the lessons learned will remain.
How do you teach your kids about money? What ideas have they had to make money? Was the idea yours or theirs? Let me know in the comments below. If you like this post or any others on this site, please subscribe to be notified when new posts go up.