Christmas shopping. Love it or hate it, presents a great opportunity to teach your child some valuable budgeting skills.
If your child is around 7 or 8 years old (and older) resist the temptation of buying Christmas presents on their behalf. This is a good time to teach them the value of money and how to use maths skills to plan their spending so that they don’t go over the budget you have given them.
- Decide how much money you are going to give your child charge over for their Christmas shopping
- Explain that this is the total amount they will be given for the use of purchasing all their Christmas presents to give to others this year
Create a Budget
- Together, list everyone whom you are buying for
- Then divide the total amount of money by the total number of people whom are being bought for
- This gives you a maximum amount of money they have available to spend per person
Let Them Loose
- Try not to interfere with their shopping (or their choices in gift) – it is their responsibility
- Help them calculate totals and how much change they should receive
- If they run out of money – don’t give them any more. This is the point of a budget, to help you to not overspend – giving them more when they run out will not help to teach them this vital money management fact.
As you give your child more responsibility, especially with financial decisions, many rise to the occasion and will surprise you by the astute choices they make. However, if they don’t you will be more aware of the areas of money management you may need to work on with them.
Enjoy your Christmas shopping!