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Money, Taxes & Small Business
Money Tips for Four, Six and Ten Year Olds
By Lori Mackey 
Mar 29, 2007, 23:09

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Your adult habits form in childhood, if a child starts the habit of taking a dollar and spending a dollar, that child is learning the habit of living paycheck to paycheck. But, if a child creates the habit of dividing their money before they spend, this will be as natural as walking and talking.

If a four year old takes a dollar and saves 10 cents for giving, saves 10 cents for investing, saves 10 cents for savings and takes the 70 cents and spends it wisely and practices this habit with every dollar, they automatically will have a head start with their financial future.

At the age of six, start implementing the allowance system, give each child chores and responsibilities that are expected everyday, some activities they will earn money for and some are expected because they are part of the family. You can use chores to break bad habits, teach independence, and the concept of earning.

Make a habit of allowing your child to bring their earned income to the market, store or mall, if they find something they want and ask you to buy it for them, just say, Yes, you can have that, but you need to use your own money. The typical response will be, But I do not want to waste my money! And, you respond with, Well, I don t want to waste mine either.

10 year olds are motivated by money, if you start teaching kids the power of investing and saving their money, they will listen intently. Go online and show your child investment calculators. Show them what the $50.00 video game would be worth in 55 years if they invested the $50.00 instead of spending it. The key is to show kids the power of invested money. Once kids see how money works, they will think twice before spending their money.

As you follow the 10/10/10/70 concept, be consistent with depositing money monthly. Every month your child will start to see how their money starts working for them, your child will start to see the power of interest, compounding and the special gift that all children have, which is time!

No matter how old your child is, it is never too late to start teaching them the value of money and how it can work in their favor.

Lori Mackey, an award-winning author, founder of Prosperity4Kids, Inc., is recognized as a leading expert on kids and money. Mackey's fun financial education products are available on her website, 866-PIGGY4U

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