I remember that the little contact with money my brothers and I had as children was change from the bakery, from the market… Or when we received a little money from our grandmother on birthdays.
At that time we were not taught by our parents or by the school how to take care of money. Then, just as he appeared, he disappeared.
Since 2020, Brazilian schools have been including financial education in their curriculum, based on the new guidelines of the BNCC (Base Nacional Comum Curricular).
The reason for the implementation is quite justifiable: according to data from the SPC Brasil (Credit Protection Service), 45% of adult Brazilians find it difficult to control their own finances. With the application of financial education, however, children learn from an early age to establish a healthy relationship with money and to be aware of consumption.
However, before simply giving money to children, educating them financially requires teaching them to have goals and to manage money to achieve those goals. To help with this process, we have listed three initial steps for you.
1. Know that allowance is essential
Each of us knew about the allowance in a different way. I met watching American movies in my childhood, where I always saw a father or mother giving their children an allowance.
Even though for some of us periodically giving money to children is not a routine, this action is very important for them to have contact with money and learn from an early age how to manage it.
From seeing so much in the movies, one day I asked my father why I didn’t have an allowance. With a smile on his face, he replied, “The only tables I know of are the ones in the kitchen and dining room.”
Although I didn’t like the answer at the time and find it funny today, I don’t judge my father, precisely because of the upbringing he had and the culture of this act in Brazil.
Allowance, weekly or fortnightly allowance… The name and frequency vary according to the age and financial reality of the parents or guardians.
It is recommended that younger children do not receive all the money at once, as they are more impulsive and still have no sense of time.
Another important guideline is that children under the age of four or who still don’t understand the numbers are oriented to deposit the money in the piggy bank — which is our next tip.
2. Show how to save
Teach your child that everything you keep and care for grows and develops, including money.
To do this, give her a piggy bank so she has a place to keep the money she earns. Even if they don’t realize the value it represents, the main message will be learned.
3. Set goals with the child
The money is already saved and has a place to stay, now it is necessary to decide what will be done with it. Teach the child that she can desire many things, but to achieve she needs to plan.
First, ask what she would like to do with the money. Then, teach her to research the price of what she wants to then reflect on the time needed to gather that value.
For example, if the child earns $5 a week and wants a toy that costs $25, he or she will need to save all the money for five weeks—or less for longer.
Depending on the age and maturity of the child, using more than one piggy bank — one for each objective — can give the notion of an emergency reserve, as well as short, medium and long-term — making it easier to understand the logic of investments.