How To Make Your Kids A Money Rockstar By Taking Advantage of Teachable Moments
The following is a guest post from Matt at Method To Your Money. Matt has just launched a new course – Family Money School. This is a course designed to help busy, overwhelmed and confused parents teach their kids about money. It’s a course packed with high quality content focused on improving financial literacy for the next generation. I HIGHLY recommend this course. With that said…Matt, please take it away!
When it comes to the topic of teaching kids about money, people have tried every possible method under the sun. From interactive games and simulations they can play at home to in-depth personal finance classes they take at school, parents and educators have attempted to make teaching kids both easy and meaningful.
As a teacher with a Masters in Education, I’ve had the opportunity to study in depth the best ways to teach kids. Not only that but with close to 15 years of teaching experience and as a school administrator, I’ve observed many different teaching styles and methods and been able to see which ones are the most effective.
What have I learned?
Well, it’s pretty simple really. Kids learn best when learning is authentic and meaningful. For teachers, this means crafting lessons that have real-world implications (authentic) and that students care about (meaningful).
As a parent of two though, I don’t have the time to spend hours planning lessons for my kids to help teach them about money. Not only that, but many parents don’t even know where to begin when it comes to WHAT to teach their kids.
I empathize with them. It’s hard enough finding the time to fit in homework, soccer practice, and swimming lessons let alone time to teach your kids about money.
But what if I told you that you could teach your kids everything they needed to know to win with money without adding an extra minute to your day? It’s possible. All you need to do is use your time with your kids a bit more efficiently.
Take Advantage of Teachable Moments
Just like a garden needs to be tended to in order to grow to its potential and to bear the maximum amount of fruit, so your child’s financial education needs to be cultivated. Ask any gardener and you’ll soon find out that cultivation doesn’t happen on its own. It requires regular, intentional effort to produce a bumper crop.
Your job as a money mentor parent is to do 2 things to cultivate your kid’s money prowess:
1.) You need to take advantage of teachable moments when they arise. Whether it’s talking with your kids about needs and wants in the grocery store or explaining to them how credit cards work when they see you swiping your card at the till in the mall, your number one priority is to make the world your classroom.
2.) As you begin to change your mindset about teaching your kids about money, thinking less about sitting down with them using a whiteboard and explaining the concept of compounding and more about using each moment as your own personal finance class for your child, you’ll find that the opportunities to teach your kiddo about money will abound.
Create Your Own Teachable Moments For Kids And Money
But taking advantage of teachable moments isn’t enough. As a teacher, I know that although many spontaneous moments arise in the classroom to teach kids timeless lessons, a teacher’s job is to create teachable moments each and every day. Creating these learning opportunities stacks the deck to help teach your kids the money lessons they need to be money rockstars.
What are some examples of how you can make this happen?
Well, in our family one activity we’ve started doing together is a Christmas shoebox for a child in need. Every year we take our kids out on a shopping trip to fill a shoebox with items for a less fortunate child. Our little munchkins pick things they think a kiddo would like or need and then they buy the items with the money they’ve been saving in their Give Jar throughout the year (of course, sometimes mom and dad have to top things up a bit!). Then, we fill up the box!!
Throughout the process of shopping and then organizing the box to be shipped, there are countless chances for us to chat with our kids about what it means to be generous, why some people don’t have as much as us, and how we’re able to use what God has given us to help others. In short, we’ve created space for teachable moments to happen.
As parents wanting to raise money geniuses, your mission is to create as many of these teachable moments as possible. But creating these opportunities is often easier said than done. Life gets busy and often these little chances to pass on our money values get lost in the shuffle between birthday parties and basketball games.
It was these busy and overwhelmed parents I was thinking about when I created Family Money School, a money course designed to help parents give their kids the financial foundation they need to thrive. That’s why in Family Money School I give you 30 conversation starters to get the money chats flowing.
You’ll get the Serving As A Family Cheatsheet and the Money Genius’ First Budget and Expense Tracker. Oh, and you’ll also get my top secret Budget Pie Activity (and recipe). I guarantee you’ll never enjoy a more delicious money lesson with your kids.
GET MORE DETAILS ON FAMILY MONEY SCHOOL
Use Money Examples Your Kids Relate To
Regardless of whether you’re taking advantage of teachable moments or creating your own, the key is to remember to use experiences kids can relate to. If you’re talking to your kid about saving, she’s probably not going to relate to the same kind of examples that would speak to you.
For example, talking about how if she starts saving even just $20 a month at age 10 she’ll be so much further ahead by the time she retires than her friends who start at age 30, probably isn’t going to motivate her to save.
Well, how about implementing a savings matching plan for that new bike she’s saving up for? Tell her you’ll match any amount she saves up to a maximum amount. Essentially, you’re doubling her money as she saves for her new wheels. Not only will this build your kid’s saving muscle, it has the added side benefit of opening up the door down the road to talk about more “grown-up” topics like investing, compound interest and even retirement matching plans.
Family Money School is PACKED FULL of helpful tips like this to allow you to take advantage of teachable moments and I’ve included TONS of tricks to show you how to create your own.
By the end of the course, you’ll be seeing teachable moments EVERYWHERE and be an expert on teaching your kids about money.
Bringing It All Together To Make Your Kids Money Rockstars
Raising a money rockstar can seem daunting at times. But I’m here to tell you it’s not only possible, it’s PROBABLE when you have a few tips and tricks up your sleeve and someone to lend you a helping hand along the way.
As parents, what you do day in and day out is nothing short of heroic! But even the greatest heroes need a sidekick – Luke Skywalker had Yoda. Captain Kirk relied on Spock. Nemo wouldn’t have been found without Dory.
When it comes to raising a money genius, you’re Batman. Let me be your Robin.
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE FAMILY MONEY SCHOOL COURSE NOW
About The Author
In addition to being the husband of an amazing wife and dad to two awesome munchkins, Matt Matheson is a teacher and school administrator with almost 15 years of experience and a passion for teaching kids. Since he had his own kids, he’s been working hard to pass on his money values to them.
It’s his love of teaching and desire to help parents raise money rockstars that lead him to develop Family Money School, a course designed to help busy, overwhelmed and confused parents teach their kids about money.