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Basic Principles
Volume 80, Program 35
3/7/2008
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“Mom, Dad, could you buy that for me?” It’s a familiar refrain, whether your child is 6 or 16. How can we teach our children to spend money wisely, rather than give in to their desire to acquire? Get some tips on today’s Home School Heartbeat with Mike Smith.

Mike Smith:
We appreciate you joining us again, Terry. Could you share some basic spending principles with parents who want to teach their children about financial stewardship?

Terry Stokka:
When our children were younger, we gave each of them a piggy bank that was divided into three compartments. And for a while we were giving them allowances, but later they earned their own money by babysitting or mowing lawns or things. What we did in the beginning was we made them place 10% of all that they earned or got for allowance in a giving section of the bank, 50% in the savings, and 40% of it was spending. The spending section was theirs to do with whatever they wanted. And it was rather interesting because we have three daughters and one son, and our daughters seemed to learn easier that if you save for something you often will want something else by the time you saved up enough; and so they amassed quite a bank account because they realized, you buy one thing and you’re not really content with it. Every few months we would talk to them about how we wanted them to invest the giving money—where they wanted to invest the giving money—and we’d send it to that organization. And we set up a savings account in the bank to hold the savings. All of them had a pretty healthy bank account even as teenagers, and we required that they would use their own money they earned for college spending money.

Mike:
Well Terry, thank you so much for this very valuable information you’ve shared with us this week. And until next time, I’m Mike Smith.


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