5 activities to get your children and grandchildren engaged in financial matters

Navigating financial matters can pose challenges for adults, let alone children, as these topics often involve concepts that seem complex or that some may feel uncomfortable broaching.

Teaching and discussing financial issues with children, grandchildren, and young people can provide them with invaluable lessons that will serve them well in the future.

However, a survey reported by FTAdviser found that less than half of UK children (47%) have been taught about money at home or school.

My Money Week (10-14 June) is a national activity week that intends to challenge this statistic.

During the week, educators aim to get young people aged 3 to 19 interested in financial matters. Depending on their age, they may learn about counting coins, opening bank accounts, or methods for managing their money effectively.

Read on to discover five activities you can do with your children or grandchildren to help improve their economic literacy and engage them in financial matters.

1. Play finance-themed board games

Games can be a great way to get into a subject and finance-themed board games often encourage and reward players to make decisions within the game that could also be rewarding in life.

Some of the best financial board games include:

  • Pop to the Shops – in this game for children, players can take on the roles of both the shopper and shopkeeper, as they travel through a village buying and selling items from different shops. Players need to work out the correct coins to pay with and how to calculate the right amount of change.
  • Money Bags – players earn money by completing household chores as they make their way around the board. They must choose the right coins to make up the payment, so children can learn how to count and recognise coins.
  • Payday – players move around a 31-day calendar board and pay various bills, loans, and lottery tickets as they wait for their payday. The player with the most money at the end wins. Payday is a great way to introduce the concept of budgeting and living expenses.
  • Monopoly – one of the world’s best-known board games. Players must balance their cash flow by earning income, saving, and spending on properties. Monopoly also offers the opportunity to learn about financial negotiation and the necessity for an emergency fund.
  • The Game of Life – another family favourite, in The Game of Life, players navigate a board that comprises an entire lifespan. Players must make life choices regarding education, career, tax, saving, and investing.

Each game is suitable for varying ages, so be sure to check that the one you choose is the right level for your child or grandchild.

2. Create a reward chart

A reward chart can be a good way for younger children to learn about the value of hard work and saving.

You could create a big chart that you pin to the wall that keeps a tally of any points the child has earned with stickers or a marker pen. Smaller tasks can be worth fewer points and bigger tasks could be worth double or more.

As their points build up, the child can exchange them for rewards. They can then decide if they want to wait to earn and save up more points in exchange for bigger rewards or opt for smaller, more regular rewards.

You can also decide on the rewards with the child, so they can think about the things they want and learn the value of how working and saving means they can eventually obtain them.

3. Develop a budget and savings plan

For older children, developing a budget and savings plan can be a good way for them to build their responsibility and independence with their pocket money or the income they earn from their weekend job.

When young people start getting paid and have a degree of financial independence, their temptation can be to spend what they earn. But it’s a great time for them to learn about the importance of saving for the future and how to create a budget, especially as they are likely to have higher expenditures as they get older.

For example, they might want to go away with their friends in the summer or buy a new game console but don’t currently have the money to do so.

You can work with them to create a weekly spending plan based on their income or pocket money and develop a budget encompassing their regular expenditure, big future expenses, and an emergency fund.

4. Introduce them to books about finance

Books can be a great way to get children of all ages into financial topics and to learn about concepts such as saving, interest, investing, fraud, and more.

For young children under the age of seven, The Four Money Bears by Mac Gardner offers a wonderful introduction to different attitudes toward managing your finances.

There’s the Saver Bear, Spender Bear, Investor Bear, and Giver Bear, and the book describes their varying dispositions, and how they work together to find the best solution for all of them.

For children under 11, the rhyming story of Rock, Brock, and the Savings Shock follows twin brothers Rock and Brock who are each given one dollar of pocket money every week by their grandfather. He promises to double their money each week if they don’t spend it.

Rock spends his, while Brock decides to save. By the end of the summer, Brock has $512, while Rock has $10 worth of goodies and no cash left over. Rock, Brock, and the Savings Shock is a child-friendly introduction to the value of saving and the concept of compound interest.

For teenagers, Why Didn’t They Teach Me This in School? by Carl Siegel is a fantastic guide to all the financial concepts and money matters that young adults should know about but are rarely taught.

The book holds eight financial lessons based on 99 principles, such as how to budget and save, what to do if you are the victim of fraud, and how things like bank accounts, loans, and credit cards work.

5. Open a children’s bank account

Opening a bank account with a child can be a good way of giving them a degree of financial independence while also ensuring you can maintain supervision and guidance of their expenses.

You can usually manage a child’s bank account until they reach either 16, 17, or 18, depending on the bank or building society you open it with. You can also limit how much they can spend or withdraw within a given time frame.

Having their own bank account can help to improve a child’s financial literacy and responsibility while giving them a sense of responsibility and autonomy.

Get in touch

We can help you create a financial plan that supports your children or grandchildren, ensuring that both your financial guidance and wealth provide a strong foundation for the next generation.

To find out more, get in touch.

Email info@blueskyifas.co.uk or call us on 01189 876655.

Please note

This blog is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.