Consumer Watch: Money lessons for kids this summer
OKLAHOMA CITY (KOKH) —
Running errands with your child is the right time to teach them about money. Kids can understand a lot more about finances than we give them credit for. Talking to your kids about money, doesn't mean showing them your pay stub, unless you want to, but it does mean cluing them into the family budget.
“When it comes to paying bills or if you have a day where you go and run all of your errands, bring your children along with you,” says Tabatha Thurman, WEOKIE Credit Union.
Paying bills can be a stressful or even boring task for adults, but kids can learn important money lessons from watching and talking to you.
“Showing them what a cellphone bill looks like, showing them what an electricity bill looks like,
how you have to pay it, when it is due-- the penalties if you don’t,” says Thurman.
Oklahoma grade school students are required to take a financial literacy class between 7th and 12th grade. Whenever your student is taking this class, that's a great time to follow up with them about what they are learning and put those lessons into practice at home.
Thurman recommends a 12-week family savings challenge for the summer.
“You bring the whole family no matter the age, maybe elementary, middle school and high school. You bring the whole family in, and bring the savings challenge together,” says Thurman.
Week one save $20
Week two save $25
Week three save $30
Then you repeat, and after the 12 weeks, you will have $300 as a family.
If you have younger kids, Thurman recommends let them make purchases with your supervision.
“They might want a popcorn, a pickle, and a hot dog, but they only have two dollars, so it gives them the ability to go-- huh this is what I have, and what can I get for it,” says Thurman.
The $300 the family saves during that 12-week challenge can be used to buy school supplies for the coming school year, and lessen the family burden when it comes time to make those purchases. If you don't have 12 weeks before the next school year, you can try the same challenge for 8 weeks, and you'll reach $195 at the end.