Teach Your Kids About Money This Holiday Season

teach your kids

Teach Your Kids Money Basics

There is no better time than now to teach your kids about the basics of money. All through November and December, there are money topics everywhere you look. Among the many opportunities for discussion are gifts, decorations, meal planning, parties, celebrations, and extra events like movies, the list goes on and on.

Here are some ideas from Dave Ramsey about how to get the most out of this great teaching opportunity.

teach your kids

With a big dose of family time coming your way, take advantage of all the teachable moments! If you make a point to get to the heart of money matters this holiday season, you will truly change your family tree.

And the best part is, it can be super easy!

Teach Your Children the Basics of Money

Kids know what money is from a very young age. They know that they like to have it and that it helps them get stuff they want. There’s no reason they can’t grasp where money comes from: work!

The reason you show up for work yourself can be a great conversation starter. If you work, you get paid. If you don’t work, you don’t get paid. It’s where your ability to buy a Thanksgiving turkey comes from. Unfortunately, not all adults understand that, but you can teach your kids that whining does not end in money.

That’s how the real world works, and it’s a good lesson for any child to learn. You can teach your kids a work ethic early on. Parents don’t need to be slave drivers, but everyone from toddlers to teens should have age-appropriate responsibilities around the house and yard.

Got a middle schooler who loves helping with the Thanksgiving cooking? That’s a great time to share the basics of how you budgeted for the turkey day groceries. And teens will want money over the holidays for fun or shopping. Don’t just give them an allowance. Teach them how to earn a commission by rewarding them for things done above and beyond their basic chores. – Dave Ramsey

Get The Kids Involved In Holiday Spending


First, as a family, decide how much you are spending on Christmas.

Some things to include in your discussion:

supplies for making gifts
cards (with postage)
family Christmas letters
gift wrappings
even the cost of bringing traditional family meals to gatherings

How much are you spending on immediate family? Extended family? Friends? Co-workers?

I highly recommend paying for Christmas in cash so you’re not bothered by paying for presents long after the holidays have ended. If you break your larger total into three segments, you can start now and set aside one portion for each of the three months still left before Christmas!

Also be sure to set a monetary limit to how much you will spend on your own immediate family or choose how many presents each person will receive.

How to Involve the Kids:

Have your children listen in on some of the spouse-to-spouse money talks to model the process of how setting a budget works with a real life scenario. They need to learn that money is finite and how important it is to decide where your money will go.

It is so easy to go overboard on buying presents for the ones you love, but limiting the gifts your own family receives will allow you to have more room to be generous with others.

How to Involve the Kids:

Have your kids write out a list of everyone you want to give a gift to and the amount you want to spend per person. Now, you will need to stick to these amounts and not buy expensive gifts out of obligation or wanting to impress people. In order to become generous adults, kids need to see generosity in action! – Don’t Waste The Crumbs

Have you ever used the day to day topics of the  holidays to teach your kids about money?

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