Originally published on dbs.com.hk 15 Sep 2021,
updated Jul 2022

Teaching your children about money matters from a young age can be one of your greatest gifts to them. Through simple, everyday activities and leading by example, kids can learn the value of money and make responsible financial decisions as they grow up.

Here are 6 tips on how to educate your children on money matters. Categorised into two different age groups, you’ll find simple activities for preschoolers from 3 to 6 years old and school-going children from ages 7 to 12.

1. Teach the concept of money through simple daily activities
Money knowledge can be learnt through engaging in simple daily activities

For preschoolers, consider bringing them along with you for grocery shopping trips. Explain to your children that the items have to be paid for with money before leaving the shop. Let them hand the money over to the cashier to increase their awareness.

For school-going children, let them calculate the change they will get back after making payment for purchases. You can also let them have a go at choosing from different brands of the same item and using the price tag to teach them about choosing a cheaper brand or a higher-priced item of better quality

2. Introduce good money-saving habits
Good money-saving habits at a young age will inculcate a habit of saving before spending.

As for school-going children, remember not to indulge your children by buying them everything they ask for. You can consider getting them to do chores to “earn money” so that they understand that money has to be earned from work. In addition, you can consider showing your encouragement by matching your children’s savings dollar for dollar. You can also bring them to choose a piggy bank of their own to motivate them to save money from their daily allowance or other reward money (such as money from Chinese New Year red packets). Make a point of explaining that they can use the savings to buy items that they desire instead of asking from Daddy and Mummy.

3. Get a transparent piggy bank
It is best to get a piggy bank that is transparent so that they can see the money increasing and be more motivated to save money. This works for both preschoolers and school-going children. You can help them to open a deposit account and show them how to deposit the money from the piggy bank when it is full.

4. Saving up red packet money
For preschoolers, cultivate a habit of passing their red packets to you for safeguarding and teach them how to count the money.

For older children, discuss with them how much of their red packet money should be saved and advise them to save all or most of it. You can also bring them to the bank to deposit the money so that they know where their red packet money goes to.

You can also explain that saving their money in a bank account earns them more money in the form of interest. This can be shown when you log in to their online bank account and highlight the interest earned. Make this a once-a-year affair as a way to help them realise how their finances have improved during the year – pretty much like what we all do!

5. Open your kids’ first savings account
To further aid in teaching them these important life lessons, consider opening a deposit account. They can deposit their gift money received during new year and birthdays so that they get a head start in building up their savings.

If you need any help or advice on how to give your kids the financial advantage in the future, feel free to get in touch with one of our Wealth Relationship Managers.