Did you read my review of Qwiddle last week? Qwiddle is a great site encouraging children to earn pocket money by completing tasks. I’m really pleased today to share this great post by Vanessa Cameron the founder of Qwiddle, full of great tips for encouraging children to manage their own money,
When you have children there’s so much to think about and so much to do. We all have days when we’re completely overwhelmed by the lists of jobs, when there simply aren’t enough hours in the day and teaching children about money is often something we shelve for ‘another time’!
Parents regularly ask me for tips when it comes to money education, and it seems to be an area which causes considerable worry and concern. For me experience is crucial, which is why I established Qwiddle, a tool that gives children hands on experience of money – (you can read Emma’s own review of it here).
Allowing children to try things out for themselves is the fast track to learning. Of course this theory doesn’t always apply, but there’s nothing like allowing your child to try something and learn from that, rather than trying to tell them the right way, which often meets with cynicism, disbelief and in the case of learning about money, a yawn!
When it comes to letting children manage their own money giving them some independence seems to be a very effective way of installing some good habits, and takes the pressure off of you. Of course, every child is different so the amount of supervision required is up to you, but as they get older they become much more savvy.
I’m not suggesting it’s all plain sailing (what is?!), there may be a few teething problems or hiccups along the way, but with your support you can give your child the opportunity to learn through doing and watch them start to put in place the right building blocks for earning, saving and spending.
To use a practical example, a friend of mine became annoyed at her son who was spending more money than she would like on biscuits, drinks and crisps in the school canteen at lunchtime. Rather than restricting her son by limiting him with a budget, she challenged him to reduce his weekly lunch money bill and incentivised him by offering to give him the saved money as a pocket money bonus.
Within a few weeks her son had come up with strategies to save money, this included getting involved with the weekly supermarket shop, looking for multi pack deal on crisps and biscuits so he could take those into school with him each day, rather than buy them at a premium in the school canteen, he even started showing an interest in special offers which would save the family money across the week!
Even though this exercise didn’t save the family much money, it illustrated to her son that there were better buying habits and how to look for deals. Ultimately it helped him to understand that with a little effort money could be saved – a pretty important lesson for life!!
If you need any help with teaching your children about money or would like to try out Qwiddle click here and enter code EBJul and we’ll put £5 into every child balance to get you started.