As a growing child, my parents taught me two things that still guide me today in making decisions about money and investment. First, they taught me very early as a child that I should earn an honest living. “If it doesn’t cost you your sweat, time and effort, it might not just be right to earn it”. Then, I was told that patience is the greatest of all virtues.
Regarding how to invest, at a little over six, father called me to his study one day and told me he was willing to give me a few dollars if I share with him how I plan to use it. He gave me few days to think up what I plan to do with the money. Father believes in the practical way of bequeathing financial virtues on us.
Like my parents, many parents have devised many ways to teach their kids the most important thing about money and investing. The strategies might differ. But the objective is to raise children who will become great investors and prudent financial managers who will positively impact their society.
Use edutainment strategy
Kids enjoy watching TV and playing computer games. Parents could leverage on them to stimulate great virtues of financial prudence and creativity in them. Like a tiny seed that grows into a static oak, over time these things will begin to make great practical meanings to them. It could as well be stories with great moral lessons on investment and money handling.
Teach them how not to spend on frivolities
Kids as early as six years should be taught to prioritize their wants and needs. Just like my parents used to say to me: “unless you make efforts at prioritizing your needs, you may earn only to plunge same into frivolities.
Teach them great virtues of patience
Early investment may pose a great concern to an investor. Little wonder provisions are made for loses in the early stage of a business. It is good children are taught about the virtue of patience early in money handling and investment. They should be taught how to wait for the appropriate time to have returns on what they have invested in. A farmer plants and waits for the season of harvest.
Encourage a child to keep introspection log
It is advisable to encourage children to keep a log of what they hope to spend on and what forms their wants and needs. This way, it is easier to help them weed off what may be seen as unnecessary expenses and characters that may adversely affect their money handling in the future.
Make the child a co-planner at home
There seems no better way to instill financial prudence in children than making them co-planners in running the finances of the home. Sit down with them, let them know expected family incomes and projected expenses. Ask them to make suggestions on how best they think the finances should be managed at home. It will enable parents to ascertain the propensities of the child and how parents could direct their wards.
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