Before my boys could walk, they learned how to shop.
I’ve been taking my boys shopping with me for their entire lives. Whether it’s a full grocery run on a busy Saturday morning or a simple mall detour for a pair of gloves, my sons have always tagged along. Some friends are amazed, the usual question being, “How do you stand the whining and begging and asking for stuff?”
(I don’t always stand it – sometimes, you can find me having an up close and personal “talk” with one of the kids. And sometimes, there’s a bit of growling involved, too.)
For the most part, however, shopping with my boys is manageable, for the simple reason that from the start, I’ve made financial education a priority. My 7-year old can identify the difference between items on sale and items on clearance. My 5-year old can do simple math to determine the amount of savings on reduced prices. And both of them know the official “shopping rule” in our family: Don’t ask mom for something if it’s not on sale. This includes toys, treats and such. Seriously, no point in wasting breath – I won’t even consider it.
(Found this old photo of Ryder shopping the sale aisle… and selecting an item with a red sticker! Way to go – I’ve taught him well! He knows when to ask mommy for a treat!)
Kids’ understanding of money concepts grows as they do. The following guidelines, courtesy of TD Canada’s Smart Money Toolkit for Parents, can help you tailor money lessons to your child’s age and developmental stage. …