8 Smart Ways to Raise Money-Savvy Kids

I’ve partnered with Fidelity & MEFA in support of the U.Fund Dreams Tour. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Are you raising money-savvy kids? Read about these 7 smart ways you and The U. Fund Dreams Tour can help your family. Some may surprise you #ad #UFundDreams

Last week, Scarlet held her own lemonade stand. We helped, of course, but she was the star of the show.

What I found fascinating was that a simple summer childhood activity – holding a lemonade stand – is CHOCK full of goodness and learning experiences. She is learning how to talk to people. She is learning how to sell something she believes in. And, she is learning how to count and handle money – with quick math skills – and she is learning about the value of money. Sometimes it seems to kids that money is readily available – ripe for their plucking. My son thinks we get it from a machine!

It does, of course, come from an ATM but he thinks the ATM just gives it to us, and that we don’t have to put it there first!

That’s why I love these experiences to help change the way they view and handle money, and how this might shape them into money-savvy adults. With the changing world, it’s always important to get a handle/understanding of money while young. And that’s part of the reason I took Scarlet to the U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent at the grand opening of the Dr. Seuss Museum several weeks ago. We wanted to see Dr. Seuss, of course, but I really wanted to see the U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent and talk more about financial decisions for my family’s future. It’s about feeling safe and secure, and imagining the future.

Here are our 8 ways to raise money-savvy kids:

1 – Start those conversations early, with games. Even from a young age, kids can understand certain concepts – like counting, more vs. less, etc. They start to understand the value of every kind of coin at an early age, and can play learning games.

2 – Be age-appropriate with your lessons. Although they can understand a lot, you can start with more simple tasks – like sorting coins. Older kids will understand how choices affect family finances and can learn more appropriate lessons.

3 – Give your children an allowance, but encourage them to earn money through work. Allowances build awareness, and you can put a dollar amount on age-appropriateness. Have them take care of household and yard chores, for small allowances.

4 – Involve your children in family decisions/purchases. We needed a new fridge and a new TV within the last year, and we included them in the process. They understood how much decision-making goes into such a giant purchase for the home.

5 – Let them make their own spending decisions with their money. Chances are, they will make mistakes. That’s ok because adults do too! It’s better to understand the value of money at a younger age. They will learn about budgeting too.

6 – Teach them to GIVE. As I write this, my kids are going through their bedrooms with trash bags – finding toys they haven’t played with in months/years. Charity/donating is a huge part of our family value system, and will charge their futures.

7 – Don’t be shy about family finances. Kids are known for asking questions – be prepared with answers that make sense to you, and align with your values. I don’t talk about EVERYTHING, but sometimes my daughter will accompany me to work and I’ll explain how much I put in for a certain job, and what the profit is after the job. We talk about mortgage and monthly bills, needs vs. wants, charity, budgets, and even the tooth fairy. Transparency – to a degree – helps with understanding.

8 – Be a role model. YOU set the best example for you kids, and what they know and understand about money. Make sure your decisions/actions model a healthy example. It was important to me to take Scarlet to the U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent.

u fund dreams tour

My kids are getting older and savvier, and sometimes it takes me a bit longer to catch up. Ultimately, I’m so impressed with what I have found out so far, and what our options are as we move forward as a family. The U. Fund Dreams Tour empowers us to make decisions about our family’s future, with resources available to help us better navigate this process.

How can you find out more?

These events will be taking place between May and October of 2017 and they look GOOD. My family attended a few U. Fund Dreams Tour events in 2016 and had a blast. The events will all have a large “U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent” filled with engaging discovery activities for kids to have fun with and connect. There are discovery activities intended to help parents better understand the challenges of saving for college, and they are also there to be fun and interactive for the kids. The U. Fund Dreams Tour is a fun and interactive chance to connect. It aims to bring awareness to the importance of saving for college, to offer viable solutions, and to help you on this journey of helping your children be more money-savvy.

MEFA’s U.Fund College Investing Plan, the Massachusetts 529 college-investing plan, is a tax-advantaged college savings plan managed by Fidelity. MEFA is a non-profit state authority that works to make higher education more accessible & affordable.

So how are you helping to raise money-savvy kids?

10 Ways to Turn Your Child’s Dreams Into Realities

I’ve partnered with Fidelity & MEFA in support of the U.Fund Dreams Tour. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Are you a family of dreamers too? Find out 10 ways to help turn your child's dreams into realities with the help of the U. Fund Dreams Tour #ad #UFundDreams

At any given time, my family is working on several different dreams.

We’ve always been a family of dreamers. You can see it in the way we imagine and envision. You can see it in the way we travel and make Halloween costumes. It’s in the way we draw out plans for chicken coops, bathroom renovations, and dream trips to Disney World. And, you can (finally) even see it in the way we execute these wildest dreams. We have individual dreams, and we have family dreams. Mostly, that all criss-crosses, intersects, and meets in the middle. As the kids grow older, they share some of our dreams, and also have their own. Which is great, because I have solo dreams too! I’m thankful for this chance to glimpse the way a child dreamer dreams, and to know I’m here to help them along their journeys.

That’s why I’m so proud to be partnered with Fidelity and MEFA on behalf of the U. Fund Dreams Tour.

Bringing Our Dreams to Life

Scarlet and I had the pleasure of visiting the U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent at the grand opening of the Dr. Seuss Museum a couple of weeks back. The grand opening featured a wonderful festival outside, and then a large glimpse into the museum. Hand in hand we walked along the collections of books, historical objects, photos, drawings, and FUN events.

child's dreams

I loved to discover every Dr. Seuss book I loved as a little girl, and as a VERY new mother. Scarlet loved to discover the books I used to read to her, and that she can now read to herself. We both also discovered books we had never seen or read.

The event was gorgeous, and now the museum is here to delight visitors for many years to come. We absolutely LOVED The U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent – where we could interact and connect. In fact, it gave my brain a much needed kickstart to really start thinking about the ways in which we want to encourage our kids’ futures and dreams, but also HOW. I walked away feeling possible. And that’s one of the most powerful feelings I know. Oh, the places we’ll go! And hopefully together!

1 – Just listen. When you were a kid, you probably had BIG dreams, right? I know I did. I know I still do. The most important thing my parents ever did was to not deny my dreams. Children mainly think anything is possible. Let them.

2 – Teach your child life skills. Sometimes I think it’s so obvious, and other times I realize how much I have missed! Luckily I have a partner who fills in where I lack. Obviously we want these life skills to be age-appropriate, but they build on each other and grow. I’m talking cooking and baking, age-relevant chores, gardening, writing letters, picking out their own gifts, navigating the world, knowing basic first aid, and more! Every kid is different, but life skills are always important.

3 – Provide a quality education. This could be the very lightbulb over their head, or wind beneath their wings. I know we tend to stress over the “right” schools and the “right” teachers, but I try to relax about that, when possible. I believe it all works out well when they’re loved at home, loved at school, and given the chances to find their way.

4 – Be positive. They learn SO MUCH from you. Having a positive attitude/outlook can be earth-shatteringly enriching for your children. Sometimes it’s hard, but I believe I got my positivity from my mom, so I’m keeping that cycle going!

5 – Don’t control your child. Their future is wide open and their dreams are like a bird – unable to be caged.

6 – Gently propel them into action. As kids grow, their interests and passions begin, develop, and grow. They can change too. Pay special attention to their interests and help them write down their dreams, research their goals, and make a timeline for achievements. Just the way you would for yourself!

7 – Show support. Your support will mean everything to them. Have small celebrations for every achievement. It’s so beneficial to have small rewards to help along the way.

8 – Create visual games, challenges and inspiration. Creating a vision board is one great idea. You can also develop little games and challenges to teach them about making small achievements – and baby steps – along the way.

9 – Believe in the dream. With every fiber of your being.

Are you a family of dreamers too? Find out 10 ways to help turn your child's dreams into realities with the help of the U. Fund Dreams Tour #ad #UFundDreams

10 – Learn more about the MEFA U.Fund College Investing Plan. This is a simple and smart way to save for your children’s futures with as little as $15/month. Learn more here.

My kids are young, but the ages and stages slip through my hands like liquid sometimes. We started out with next to nothing, and we’ve been building our lives and our dreams on a brand new foundation of hope and information ever since. It takes hard work for us, but we don’t have to go it alone. The U. Fund Dreams Tour empowers us (and you) to make decisions about our family’s future, with resources available to help us better navigate this process. How can you find out more?

Are you a family of dreamers too? Find out 10 ways to help turn your child's dreams into realities with the help of the U. Fund Dreams Tour #ad #UFundDreams

These events will be taking place between May and October of 2017 and they look GOOD. My family attended a few U. Fund Dreams Tour events in 2016 and had a blast. The events will all have a large “U. Fund Dreams Tour Tent” filled with engaging discovery activities for kids to have fun with and connect. There are discovery activities intended to help parents better understand the challenges of saving for college, and they are also there to be fun and interactive for the kids. The U. Fund Dreams Tour is a fun and interactive chance to connect. It aims to bring awareness to the importance of saving for college, to offer viable solutions, and to help you on this journey of helping your children achieve their dreams.

Are you a family of dreamers too? Find out 10 ways to help turn your child's dreams into realities with the help of the U. Fund Dreams Tour #ad #UFundDreams

MEFA’s U.Fund College Investing Plan, the Massachusetts 529 college-investing plan, is a tax-advantaged college savings plan managed by Fidelity. MEFA is a non-profit state authority that works to make higher education more accessible & affordable.

So, how do you help turn your child’s dreams into realities?

Are you a family of dreamers too? Find out 10 ways to help turn your child's dreams into realities with the help of the U. Fund Dreams Tour #ad #UFundDreams