If you have been trying to decide when the best time is to start teaching your child about money, the answer is now!
Below we have a variety of fun and interactive ways to teach your child about the basics of money and saving.
Looking at money
The best way to start teaching your child about money is by introducing them to it. Get a selection of notes and coins and show them to your child. Allow them to play with and examine the money. You can discuss the various colours, shapes, textures, and sizes. If your child starts to become disinterested, suggest drawing pictures of the money, or make your own money from card and paper.
In order to help your child understand the value of money, you can help them sort the money by denomination. If your child is good with numbers, you can also include elements of maths, such as simple addition and subtraction. Ask your child to pick up a particular number of coins, then instruct them to add or take coins away from that number. Finally, ask how many coins they are left with. Start with process with pennies, and then move onto 2p, 5p and 10p coins.
Visit a shop
Now that your child understands what money is and its value, they next step is to show them how money is used. The best way to do this is by visiting a shop. No matter whether you are doing your weekly food shop or if you go on a special trip to a shop, include your child in the process. Point out the prices of items you are going to buy and show them what that amount looks like with money. When you go to pay let your child give the money to the cashier (if they are not too shy!).
It is important that you teach your child to respect money so that when can avoid getting into debt when they are older. You can try an experiment with your child by giving them a coin each day for a week to put in a piggy bank. At the end of that week take the money out and count up how much they have accumulated. As a treat take your child to a shop in order to spend the money. If your child sees something they want that is more money than what they have, you can explain that they would need to save and wait for longer in order get it.
By giving your child an understanding about money and saving early on in their life, it will benefit them in the long-term. We all want our children to be financially secure when they leave the nest. A way to help your child become a financially conscious adult is by teaching them how to be responsible with money. If you want to find more activities to teaching children under 5 about money, you can download F&C Investments free Saving Superstar