United Community Bank is proud to celebrate National Teach Children to Save Day on April 22 to help youth in their communities learn to make smart money choices. Established by the American Bankers Association, the awareness day is an opportunity for families and schools to teach children about the value of money and equip them with strong money management skills that can be carried into adulthood.
“Saving money is a great habit and it is one of the most important aspects of building a secure financial foundation, “ said Moryah Jackson, Vice President, Director of Community Development and Engagement. “By teaching children the importance of saving at a young age, we are preparing them to responsibly handle their finances in the future. Whether they are under age 10 or in high school, there is an opportunity to begin learning more about money and finance.”
United offers the following ideas for celebrating Teach Children to Save Day:
1. Have a money discussion.
Communication about finances should begin early. Use this day to introduce your children to the concept of money and savings by helping them understand the difference between wants and needs. Create a simple, mock budget that separates needs like food and shelter from wants like a new phone or a trip to their favorite restaurant. This exercise will help them begin to understand that their financial priorities should take precedence over their desires.
2. Set a savings goal.
While the concept of a “rainy-day fund” is fathomable for adults, kids will struggle with the idea of saving money if they have no goal in mind. Have your child choose an item they’d like to purchase from their “want” list, then have them divide the total item price by the number of weeks in which they’d like to have the item. As they earn money over the course of those weeks, they then get to decide whether they want to save for the big item or if they’d prefer to spend it elsewhere.
3. Establish a place to save.
For younger children under age 10, a piggy bank or container at home is a great visual representation that will allow them to watch their savings grow. Alternatively, you could have them craft a savings tracker on a poster board, and as they earn money, have them fill in a higher portion of the drawing until it reaches the top.
Children over age 10 might be better suited for a parent-supervised bank account. Visit your local bank to open a checking or savings account for them and allow them to join you as you take trips to the bank in the future. This will help them learn about bank processes and the benefits that come with having a strong banking relationship all while watching their savings grow.