Teach Your Children To Be Responsible With Money

The 17 long time readers of the blog know that every year I write several posts about educating my children. There are two standard posts that I include in this group:

1) The cost/benefits of a private school education.

2) Curriculum- What sort of courses should our children be taking and what isn’t being taught in school that should be.

How to use money responsibly is at the top of that list. Ignore your political leanings for a moment and think about the shameful behavior of the US government a few weeks ago regarding the debt ceiling. Think about the economy for a moment and then take a stiff drink because you’ll need it after that.

More than a few of us are living paycheck to paycheck. More than a few of us are wondering how to make ends meet. People are losing their homes, fighting to find affordable healthcare and wondering if they will ever be able to afford to retire. One of the best things that we can do is teach our children fiscal responsibility. It is not something that they will learn in school so it is up to us to teach them how it is done.

Some time ago I learned about a tool/company that we can use to help make that happen. It is called ThreeJars and it is a simple, yet effective way to help provide that education. Watch the video just below and you’ll gain a greater understanding of how it works and what it does:

I strongly encourage you to check it out. They offer a free two week trial. If you like it sign up for it and start helping your children learn about the value of compound interest and saving. If you don’t sign up that is cool too, but either way I strongly urge you to teach your children how to use money responsibly. It is one of the most important and critical lessons that they will learn in life.

(Disclosure: I am part of their affiliate program.)

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  1. TheJackB August 21, 2011 at 1:01 am

    @Hajra I think that’s great. It really is something that is so important for children to learn. Parents really help their children immensely when they teach them how to use money.

  2. Hajra August 20, 2011 at 8:02 am

    Hey Jack,

    This is such an important message. My dad made sure he made us responsible with money and none of us siblings spend too much. Even when we get bonuses or some “extra cash” my dad made sure we knew the importance of saving and spending it when you need it!

  3. TheJackB August 19, 2011 at 11:15 pm

    @coachdiana I just happened to stumble onto this and it made a lot of sense to help promote it.

  4. Chopperpapa August 19, 2011 at 5:31 am

    Wonderful idea and concepts, now if they could just get parents to be responsible with their own moey.

  5. coachdiana August 19, 2011 at 2:51 am

    Hi Jack,

    What you are doing is wonderful because children should learn to be fiscally responsible at a young age. I have always wondered why such an important aspect of everyone’s life is never taught but rather it’s trial and error. More often than not it’s error and learning the hard way!

  6. TheJackB August 17, 2011 at 9:58 pm

    @bdorman264 Kids rarely know if something is “different” or “strange” unless an adult tells them that something is off.

    I don’t want my kids to grow up any faster than they have to, but at the same time I want them to learn how to get along in the world as best they can. That includes character, values and life skills like money, cooking etc.

  7. TheJackB August 17, 2011 at 9:52 pm

    @BetsyKCross I work with my kids on this quite actively as I don’t want them to get caught like so many others. The “3” system is pretty darn effective.

  8. bdorman264 August 17, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Interesting; I grew up w/ nothing (but didn’t know it) in a somewhat dysfunctional family so I knew how to look out for myself at an early age; including cooking, sewing, and paying my own way through school. At the time I didn’t appreciate it, but it made me who I am.

    Fast forward to my kids and we enabled them because we could. They turned out ok; one is an attorney and the other will probably sell insurance like his dad but in hindsight I wish they experienced some of what I did to better prepare them for the ‘real world’. They will make it, but you wonder at times what are the best life lessons to teach and how do you do it?

    I think you have the right idea Jack and make sure you teach them the ‘important’ stuff; how to survive.

  9. BetsyKCross August 17, 2011 at 5:08 am

    Hi Jack,

    I read the book “The Richest Man in Babylon”, by George Clason years ago. I came away with the concept of percentages and priorities. We like that system because it works with any size income. We use 3 separate piggy banks. 10% always comes off the top, savings is next and the 3rd is “fun” money.

    I’ve been thinking a lot lately about reviewing basic skills. We use monopoly money and real bills. Once the kids see the income and outgo they are a bit humbled. It always ends with, “Boy! I need to get a job!”

    Thanks for the reminder!

    I’m going to check out their site and see if it would be something we (I) could stick to.


  10. Jack August 16, 2011 at 10:57 pm

    I don’t mind people disagreeing with what I have to say. Don’t care if they take a different position but there is a way to do it that isn’t considered to be obnoxious, offensive and smarmy. It is really not hard to do. Simply avoid telling parents that they don’t know what they are doing and try not to engage in slimy self promotion. Aside from that all is golden.

  11. TheJackB August 16, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    @reverse_osmosis It is what I do.

  12. TheJackB August 16, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    @LetMeStart I was very pleased to be introduced to ThreeJars and think that what they are teaching is of the utmost importance. They really need to spend some serious time on this in school.

  13. LetMeStart August 16, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    This is great. I remember always learning about finances, bank accounts, balancing checkbooks, etc in school and having my own (itty bitty) bank account opened when I was maybe 7yo. but from what I hear about now, the schools aren’t teaching it any more and the parents are lost at how to do it.

    So thanks for sharing this!

  14. reverse_osmosis August 16, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    great post, thank you for sharing.

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