When my two kids were young, I forced them to sit with me on a regular basis to learn about money management. I taught them about budgeting, credit cards, bank loans, savings accounts, bonds, and even real estate. My daughter loathed every minute of those sessions. She'd beg not to have to listen, but I'd be stone hearted and insist she pay attention. My son, on the other hand, couldn't get enough of it. He actually started his IRA at 15 years old, bought two rental properties in his early 20s, and came out of college and grad school debt free. But, so did my daughter. She came out of college debt free, had a stack of U.S. Savings Bonds, and owned a portfolio of blue chip stocks. So, what is the lesson here? Namely this: Teach your children how to manage money, whether or not they want to be taught, and when they are older they won't be a burden to you and they will praise you for that knowledge.
With that in mind, I wholeheartedly endorse Your Kids Can Master Their Money: Fun Ways to Help Them Learn How by Ron and July Blue and Jeremy White. If you think I was a fanatic about this, consider the fact that Ron and Judy Blue started training their kids in budgeting at eight years old by giving them each five envelopes labeled for various spending objectives. They had to allot money for Christmas and birthday gifts, personal spending, tithing, and even emergencies. And why did they feel this was necessary? Well, some current statistics they share in their book serve as a wake-up call to parents. Whereas sex education is mandatory in 90% of American public schools starting in fifth grade, only seven states have a requirement that high school students have to have at least one course in personal financial management before graduation. The magazine Consumer Reports did research that showed that 28% of high schoolers didn't think credit cards were a form of borrowing, and 40% of students didn't realize you had to pay interest on loans you take out from a bank. This has a ripple effect. Every ten years the number of bankruptcies of people under age 25 increases by more than 50%. Also, it now takes five people under the age of 35 to equal the church donations of one person over age 65.
Yes, those are scary revelations. The time to turn the tide is now, and the authors are ready to help parents in a variety of ways. First, this book has great lessons on budgeting and decision making. Second, it has fifty games and exercises families can engage in that will teach children how to understand saving, spending, investing, tithing, giving offerings, and setting financial goals. Third, it has Scripture references to help parents know how to train children in a godly manner regarding money.
One interesting caution this book points out that might serve as a motivator for parents to educate their children in regard to money is this: Your children will pick out your rest home and will determine your style of living once you get old and feeble. Hmm...that's worth keeping in mind. – Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Christian Book Previews.com
Who's teaching your kids how to handle money? Are they protected from advertisers and credit card companies trying to grow a new crop of consumers? It's up to you.
But aren't finances too complicated? Won't your kids be bored? And how can you pass along a truly biblical view?
Thanks to Christian financial experts (and experienced parents) Ron and Judy Blue and Jeremy White, teaching your kids the value of a dollar can be surprisingly easy--and fun! The tools are all here, including more than 50 creative learning activities. Protect your children in this "material world"--with "Your Kids Can Master Their Money!"