I've mentioned that our family is taking the Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University class, and when I say "our family" that means the kids too. We invested in the Financial Peace Junior kit. The kids love the Junior books that teach financial responsibility at their level with fun and witty stories.
Another part of the program involves posting chores for commission, and all the money they earn is divided 50, 40, 10, into envelopes, teaching them to budget.
50% to long term savings- for a car (when they are deemed responsible enough to own one).
40% to spend.
10% to give.
This week I chose the Operation Christmas Child program for them to GIVE their ten percent toward.
In the past we have gone shopping, they will pick out items, and I will foot the bill. This year, the project was tempered. I took the kids shopping and they paid for the gifts with the money from their GIVE envelopes. They didn't have a lot of money, because we've only been giving them commission for a couple of weeks ( I think $8.00 between all three of them) but they managed to fill one box.
It is my hope that my children learned the joy of giving to others from their own pockets.
Let me tell you, though, I think following a program like this is harder on the parents than the kids! We are still working out the bugs in our system. At first we paid them too much, not enough was being saved, and they were able to buy a new toy each week: NOT realistic.
I explained that the adult equivalent would be me buying a new fancy camera one week. And then a Kitchen Aid. And the next week a new ipod. We'd be in debt, big time, if I did that. So we've had to tweak our system with them, keeping it realistic, and not without some grief! Kids would rather not learn about financial realities! Come to think of it, neither do adults! But, we're making progress, and for that I am proud.