3 Steps to Re-Kickstart Your Kiddo’s Savings Goal After They’ve Lost Interest

Goal setting for kids | activities | ideas | students | growth mindset These are GREAT ways to help get my kiddo working towards a goal again. They seem to lose interest so quickly! #goal setting for kids #activities #ideas #students #growth mindset| https://www.moneyprodigy.com/goal-setting-for-kids-when-they-lose-interest/

Goal setting for kids – especially goals around money – needs to have these steps built in for when they lose interest and belief that they’ll actually ever get there.

So, your kiddo has declared a savings goal they’re going to save up for…and gave up on it after only a week (again)?

It happens.

Heck, it even happens to adults (anyone notice the difference in gym traffic February 1st versus January 1st? Same concept).

Right out the gate, a goal is exciting. Maybe it’s thrilling, slightly intimidating, but makes you feel important enough to announce it to everyone.

Then when the going gets tough – your kiddo sees something else they’d like, or they stop believing they’ll ever actually reach the more expensive goal and so opt for the instant gratification purchase instead – the goal just kind of fades away.

Let’s discuss strategies for getting your child to re-kickstart that savings goal of theirs, even after they’ve lost interest and moved onto the next thing.

Jump Starter #1: Have the “People Make it on the Second-Go-Round” Talk

Chances are, if you point out the fact that your child has given up on their savings goal so soon, it’ll probably make them a bit bummed (if they’re not kicking themselves about it already).

SO, now’s the PERFECT time to introduce a pep-talk with concrete examples of really popular inventions/events/goals where the original person had failed to create on their first try, that we all take for granted today.

A few come to mind for me:

  • Walt Disney: The man behind Mickey Mouse was actually fired from a newspaper once because he was thought to not have enough imagination and not enough good ideas. Go figure? Thank goodness that he kept going, as we would have all missed out on Disney World, The Little Mermaid (my personal favorite), and all things cartoons.
  • J.K. Rowling: Her goal was to get her Harry Potter series of books published. And yet, she was rejected by 12 different publishers first.
  • Jim Carrey: He knew he wanted to be a comedian since before 10. At 15, he took the stage for his first routine ever…and completely bombed it. But he kept going!

Jump Starter #2: Break the Original Goal Down into Pre-Chosen Rewards

Goal setting for kids 101: Your child has got to BELIEVE that they can actually reach their savings goal. Otherwise? Well…they’ll give up again.

Adults do it all the time! Like…:

  • I can’t actually save up for a trip to Paris, so instead I’ll use the money I have saved up for a beach weekend getaway.
  • Paying off all our debt is impossible to do, so instead of throwing any extra money towards it, I’ll let it get eaten by our checking account gremlin.
  • I feel really crummy about not getting what I really want, so I’ll spend $9.42 on my Starbucks order.

This go-round, help them break the goal down into tinier chunks with rewards at the end of each.

It’s like building a personal board game of rewards!

So, for example: a purchase goal that will take $52 can be broken down into three $17 chunks. Each time your child achieves a $17 increase in their savings, they can reward themselves – with your blessing – by:

  • Having a friend sleepover.
  • Getting to choose what’s for dinner (Mama’s homemade cooking!).
  • Getting to choose the movie for family movie night.

Jump Starter #3: Introduce a “Surprise” Money Incentive

This time ‘round when goal setting for kids, keep them motivated for longer by introducing a surprise money incentive from the Bank of Mom & Dad.

Choose a random week (perhaps when they seem a little eager to give up…like week 2), and tell them that all money that hits their savings account for their goal by Friday is going to be doubled by you guys!

Goal setting for kids is really about stretching and growing their instant gratification muscle. And it’s hard to do. You’ve now got 3 smart strategies for getting your child to follow through with their goals. Which are you most excited to try?

9 Books to Teach Children to Save Money

Kids save money | children | ideas | jars | quotes | tips | Teach children to save money...I cannot think of a more important money life skill to pass on. These books go beyond the jars. #kidssavemoney #children #ideas #jars #quotes #tips | https://www.moneyprodigy.com/teach-children-to-save-books/

Teach children to save by introducing the concept + diving deeper into it through this list of money books. Broken down by age.

If you’re like me, then you like to prime your kids for the next phases in their lives through books. And books are an excellent way of introducing new concepts to them, peaking their interest, or diving much deeper into a topic you want them to explore.

While my little 21-month old is more into the realm of potty-training + identifying colors in books, yours is likely ready to tackle some of the money issues − and specifically, how to teach children to save money − you’d like to pass onto them.

So today, we’re going to do just that by offering a curated list of books to teach children to save.

Saving Money Book #1: The Ant and the Grasshopper, Amy Lowry Poole

Ages: 4+ years

This is a twist on the classic Aesop’s fable, where the ants consistently, and without hesitation, prepare for the winter months while the grasshopper focuses on games + entertainment in the Chinese Emperor’s Summer Palace.

The Money Lesson(s): Consistent, and sometimes hard, work pays off. Preparation for tough times to come − financially or otherwise − is a good idea. That’s why we want to teach children to save money!

Life Lesson(s): The ants may be super prepared for winter while the grasshopper is out in the cold, but there is something to be said for enjoying life more. The lesson here is somewhere along the lines of “work hard, but don’t forget to play hard. Play hard, but don’t forget to leave time for work.”

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Relate this lesson to something in your own household that you do throughout the year in financial preparation. For example, when my sister worked for a school bus company she did not receive a paycheck during the summer months. So, throughout the year she would need to save extra each month to make up for having no paycheck for 2.5 months. What season/item/bill do you financially prepare for ahead of time? Property taxes? Christmas? Summer Camp fees?

Saving Money Book #2: How the Second Grade Got $8,205.50 to Visit the Statue of Liberty, Nathan Zimelman

Ages: 5-8 years

I love how this book organizes such a huge task − raising a large sum of money − with a child Treasurer who makes reports. The reports break down their interesting and sometimes funny methods to raise money by the expenses and then overall profits. But it’s done in a very story-telling kind of way, not like a profit-n-loss meeting. This book is hilarious!

The Money Lesson(s): You can shoot for high money goals! Also, remember that when you sell something, not all of the money you bring in is actually profit. There are expenses you incurred that you need to account for to come to your profit number.

Life Lesson(s): Have a big idea − like checking out the Statue of Liberty? All of your goals are doable. You just need to brainstorm and take action on your ideas for how to get there.

Bonus Money Talk Starter: What are some school fundraisers you’ve participated in the past? List them out. Now, talk about which ones were successful, and which ones were not. Why do you think some were successful and some weren’t? Which ones did your child enjoy the most?

Saving Money Book #3: Rock, Brock, and the Savings Shock, Sheila Bair

Ages: 6-9 years

This book describes two twins who live very differently, and who treat their money very differently. This becomes hugely apparent when their grandfather gives them a very intriguing proposition: He’ll pay them each $1 per week to mow his lawn and wash his car. Then he’ll match whatever they have in savings. One twin cannot keep his impulse purchases at bay − broccoli-flavored gum, anyone? − and the other ends up with a sweet $512 after 10 weeks.

The Money Lesson(s): Aside from ‘you need to have a grandfather who will match your savings from mowing his lawn and washing his car, dollar for dollar’ (ha!)? Saving money is wise for two reasons. Number one, you can afford more quality-of-life changing items. And number two, because your savings grows through interest (and through matches you can score).

Life Lesson(s): Don’t judge a person by their outside achievements. The beginning of this book is interesting because it sets up the twins in that one is a winner, and the other one is a loser. But it turns out the “loser” twin knew his stuff when it came to saving money.

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Ask your kiddo to describe a time that they purchased something and felt really bad about it afterwards. Tell them it’s called “buyer’s remorse”, and that sometimes it happens to adults as well. Share your own story of buyer’s remorse with them.

Saving Money Book #4: Less than Zero, Stuart J. Murphy

Ages: 6-10 years

In a little penguin’s world, the currency is clams and the thing to have? An ice scooter (costs 9 clams). Of course, there are other temptations along the way – the Ice Circus, Sardine Fishy Treats, and Fishy Fries.

This book clearly demonstrates both a savings goal, as well as what it means to go down to “less than zero” (owing others money).

The Money Lesson(s): You can go into debt with people, and that’s what happens when you take out a loan. Also, temptations will always show up when you have a savings goal; it’s your decision what to choose to spend your money on.

Life Lesson(s): Be kind and honest – when someone loses their money and you find it, be sure to attempt to give it back to them. It might be their last “clam”!

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Ask your kiddo about trendy things that lots of kids are buying right now. Then ask them about a trend in the past that was “all the rage”, but died out (for example, you don’t still have your slap bracelet, do you Mama Bear? Does your kiddo think it’s smart to spend money on items that become uncool so quickly?

Saving Money Book #5: Start Saving, Henry!, Nancy L. Carlson

Ages: 5-8 years

After weeks and months of mindless spending, Henry the mouse sets his eyes on a Super Robot Dude. The cost? A whole $30. His allowance per week is just $5. That’s when the idea that he can save up his allowance from week to week dawns on him.

Fun aside: does anyone else here remember those giant jawbreakers from our childhood?

The Money Lesson(s): Life keeps happening, despite your savings goal. So, you need to keep coming back to it no matter how far away it might seem. You’ll get there, one day!

The Life Lesson(s): I like how Henry makes the realization at the end that even though he got what he wanted, he’s just going to start saving more money from now on because you never know when you’ll need the cash.

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Talk to your child about a savings goal that they have that would cost more than their weekly/bi-weekly/monthly allowance. Ask your child if they would like to set aside a certain amount of money each allowance to put towards it. See how they’re feeling.

Saving Money Book #6: Anna & Solomon, Elaine Snyder

Ages: 4-8 years

This is a heart-warming book about a Jewish couple who decides it’s in their best interest to leave Russia due to persecution.

What I like about their savings goal – to send the husband to America and establish a business, then send money back for her ticket – is wrapped around both earning money from their talents, as well as a goal with real life consequences.

This isn’t just about saving up for a new ice scooter!

What’s endearing is that Anna actually sends her younger brother, her older brother, and her mother before she uses the money her husband sends for her own ticket. While her husband is disappointed, each time he goes back to work and earns/saves up for another ticket.

Eventually, all are reunited.

Pssst: this is a true story!

The Money Lesson(s): Sometimes you save up for really fun and non-necessary items, like a video game, or a new robot. And other times? You save up for very important, life-altering things, like a ticket so that your family can be reunited with you. Also, once you’ve successfully saved up for one goal, you can just start right in on the next one. And the next one.

The Life Lesson(s): Life takes patience. Getting what you want can take a lot of patience. Keep at it – short-term sacrifices can oftentimes lead to long-term happiness and stability.

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Share a time that you saved money as a family for something very important — more so than a want, something that was a need.

Saving Money Book #7: Just Saving My Money, Mercer Mayer

Ages: 4-8 years

Little Critter wants a new skateboard because his old one has bit the dust. So his father asks him to save up for it. The little guy comes up with different chores he can do around the house for money – with varying degrees of success – and finally his mason jar is so full that he needs to open a savings account!

I like how this book takes your child through the process of first saving money in a jar, and then transitioning to a savings account at a bank.

The Money Lesson(s): You can earn money to put towards a savings goal. Also, you can choose to either save your money in a jar, or at a bank.

The Life Lesson(s): It’s okay to change your mind! Just like Little Critter did at the end.

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Talk to your kiddo about the positives and negatives of saving money in a mason jar/piggy bank versus saving money in a savings account.

Saving Money Book #8: Mamá’s Birthday Surprise, Elizabeth Spurr

Ages: 8-9 years

I love the details of Mexican culture in this book, as well as the concrete savings goal this family has and sees through.

Three children and their hard-working mother – working, going to college – live in Glendale, CA. After a large earthquake, her mother was taken in by her rich Uncle in Guadalajara, and often recounts his many luxuries and the goodness of life there. She married an American, who took them to California. Unfortunately, he died in a car crash.

The mother wanted to return on a visit to Mexico and bring her family to meet her Uncle. To save up for the trip, they have a piggy bank on top of the fridge that they affectionately named Jamón.

Follow along as several life events, such as job loss, coincide with the kids saving up all their earnings on the side so that they can surprise their mother with a birthday gift – enough money to pay for all four plane tickets to Guadalajara.

I love all the details on Mexican culture!

The Money Lesson(s): Kids can earn + save up enough money to actually make a difference to a real-life situation. That’s empowering! This book also briefly mentions life insurance from the death of her husband. Also, because of what they found out happened to the Uncle, it’s a good thing for them to understand that money can come and go.

The Life Lesson(s): Have faith in your parents. Sometimes they tell stories that aren’t true with your benefit in mind. And other times? They’re telling the truth, even if it might not seem like it at first.

Bonus Money Talk Starter: Since your  kiddo will learn that the once-rich Uncle loses everything, now’s the perfect time to discuss with them the need for emergency funds. Save money during the good times, so that you have it in the bad times.

Saving Money Book # 9: Not Your Parents’ Money Book, Jean Chatzky

Age: 10+ years

I really like how the various subjects of this book – making, saving, and spending your own money – are led by actual kids’ questions that Chatzky surveyed from around the U.S.

Let’s be honest: kids are real! They want to know ways to earn money that don’t have to do with babysitting, or they confess that their parents have a rule that if they receive $10 in one day they’re not allowed to spend it all that day (good rule).

Chatzky advises your child to save 10% of all of their income for life and shows them the breakdown of how this would land them over a million dollars (if they invest it as well) by retirement. Not so bad. I wish I had started when I was a teen!

She dives into the difference between simple and compound interest, why you want to use a bank instead of your mattress to stash your savings, and lots more.

A section I particularly like in the book? Is when she breaks down incomes from common job types. Not necessarily related to savings, but eye-opening for your child, anyhow (and, let’s face it, you need money to save money!).

Another favorite? The chapter on “Why does money make people so crazy?”

Bonus Money Talk Starter: This book is different from the others as it reads more like a kids’ money textbook (but a fun one). So you could ask your kiddo what questions they have after reading through everything.

What are your favorite kids’ stories that teach children to save money? Please leave them in the comments below!

57 Savings Actions Steps to Teach One of THE Most Practical Money Skills

Kids save money | children | ideas | jars | quotes | tips |  Of the practical money skills I want to teach my child, how to save money is at the top of the list! Awesome that there's 57 ways to do it. #kidssavemoney #children #ideas #jars #tips #quotes | https://www.moneyprodigy.com/57-savings-actions-steps-teach-one-practical-money-skills/

You’d be hard-pressed to find more important practical money skills to pass onto your kiddo than this one – how to save money.

I interviewed 16 Mama Bears about what they want to teach their kid(dos) about money.

But I didn’t just want to know the steps they were taking, or what custodial financial accounts they had opened. I wanted to also understand their own money hang-ups and relationships.

Psst: by the way, would you be a doll and take this survey yourself? I’m always trying to learn more about what it’s like to be YOU trying to teach your child about money.

I was pretty shocked to find out that 14 out of 16 of the women who took the survey said they’d received little to ZERO money education from their own parents.

Their answers to what kind of money education they received as a kid say it all:

  • “Little to none. My mother had a terrible relationship with money and either had none or spent it like it was water if she had any.”
  • “None. I mean I would say virtually none. My parents never sat down and they didn’t even sit down and show me like when I got my first checking when I went to college. I didn’t even get any education around that.”
  • “None. My mom had and still has credit card debt. You would think I would have learned to avoid the struggle but I didn’t.”
  • “Life. Nothing formal.”

The thing is? I know you’re different. You want to teach your child one of the most important life skills you can – money management – because you don’t want them to start out in the deficit (figuratively, and literally) that you did.

I’m here to help you with just that.

Where to Start the Money Education with Your Own Child

Listen UP: If I could only choose ONE lesson that I could help you teach your kid(dos) about money – and there are umpteen numbers of lessons to choose from – then I would choose how to save money, hands down.

I’m not a betting woman, but if I were, I would put ALL my chips onto that one.

Saving money – the automatic outcome to another important money lesson of spending less than you earn – gets people out of a lot of problems.

It helps people do things like…:

  • Have an emergency fund/buffer savings to tap for those life oopsies.
  • Set aside money for retirement.
  • Have money to start investing.
  • Put a down payment on a home.

I could go on. But instead, I’ll jump into ways to get this lesson to stick. Because let’s face it: saving money does not come naturally to many people.

Let’s attack the challenge of teaching your kid(dos) to save their money from all different angles. I’m going to show you 6 big steps you can take to implant a healthy savings habit into your child now – before their checking account depends on it.

But that’s not all! I’ve actually created a free checklist of 57 different savings action steps to get your kid(dos) to save more money.

#1: Understand that money accumulates when left alone

Let’s talk about the actual process of letting money accumulate.

Your child needs to learn that money can accumulate when it’s left alone – both from compound interest earned in a savings account, and from saving a few dollars from allowance-to-allowance.

In order to see that, you’ve got to set up saving-money spaces. Otherwise, you might just continue to find it crumpled up on their bedroom floor (*gasp*! Yes, I’ve had more than one Mama Bear tell me this is an issue in their household).

Action Step: Set up a bank-trip day in your household. Let your kiddo know that on this day (weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly), you’ll be swinging by their savings account bank and they can make a deposit. And to get them really motivated? Swing by on this day, even if they have no money to deposit. It’s a nice reminder for them to save their money.

#2: Save up for their next want

Your kiddo – just like us adults – will be much more motivated to save their money if they have a very specific goal in mind.

Help them come up with their goal to save for, and then tie every money conversation/money question they have back to it. Wow will those conversations be more meaningful to them!

Action Step: Help your child narrow down a savings goal that will take, at most, a few weeks to reach. Otherwise, they’ll lose interest!

#3: Stick with a Savings Goal for more than a week

Sure, your kiddo might have a goal to save for now…but what’s going to keep them motivated to actually continue putting money aside for it in the weeks and months to come?

Action Step: Introduce a savings matching bonus that takes place at the end of the second week of their savings goal attempt. Do it again, but two weeks after that.  

#4: Stop spending their money as soon as they get it

Ahhh…the anti-savings behavior that most kiddos (and adults) wrestle with.

We’re not just growing money with these action steps – we’re growing lifelong habits. Let’s change this behavior by establishing a healthier one so that when your child gets their hands on their first paycheck they know what to do with it.

Action Step: Change the day of the week when you give your child an allowance. You don’t want to give them money the night before they have boundless opportunities to spend it (such as a Friday). Instead, give them their allowance on a Sunday night. That way, they’ll have to save some of it for next weekend…or else live with the outcome of a penniless weekend (trust me, they won’t do that more than a few times).

#5: Understand that money has actual value

Isn’t it so frustrating when your kid buys something that (and you know this ahead of time – ahhh it’s almost a curse how clairvoyant we Mamas are, right?) they’ll stop playing with next week?

So, how do you get your kiddo to stop wasting their money? Well, they’ve gotta understand that money has value. That not spending their money on something that has very little use for them, and instead spending it or saving it up for something that will make a bigger difference in their life is the way to go.

Action Step: Take a toy-graveyard inventory with your child. Ask them to gather a hand full of toys that they no longer play with because they lost interest. Now you go in and gather a hand full of toys that they “wasted” money on because they bought them (or you bought them at their pleading) and they stopped playing with after just a few uses. Take out a pen and paper and get them to help you estimate what each toy cost at the time of its purchase. Then tally up the total. Reveal this to your child, then ask them how they would feel if, instead, they had this money in their savings right now.

#6: Earn/Source money for their savings

Now that we’ve got savings space(s) set up + optimized, let’s start looking at ways to earn and source more money to actually fill ‘em up!

Action Step: Come up with a list of 7-10 different Savings Chores/Projects around the house that your child can do. What makes these special is that the money earned from them goes directly into their savings space for their goal. 

That’s 6…and I’ve got 51 more action steps right here:

Weird but Effective Trick to Make Saving for Kids Easy

No kid savings plan is complete without this 1 weird saving money trick I'm about to show you.  Teach children this at a young age, and, parents, you'll have set them up for massive savings success! #kidsavingsplan #children #ideas #money #parents | https://www.moneyprodigy.com/weird-effective-trick-make-saving-kids-easy/

Saving for kids comes a lot easier (adults, too) if they use this one, weird trick I’m about to show you.

There is power in naming something.

Naming something gives it a purpose. A place to focus an intention.

Savings accounts are no different when it comes to both needing a name and an actual purpose (which go hand-in-hand, by the way).

When a savings account lies around, unnamed, it’s this sort of blob.

Sure, it can grow. Sure, you can use it for goals as they come and go. But without naming it something that aligns with its purpose, the time it’ll take you to get to whatever goals you have will take longer – no matter if you’re a child or an adult.

Clarity is powerful, after all.

Leave an un-intentioned amount of money aside for too long, and suddenly it becomes the perfect amount to spend on a new video game, or absorbs a convenience-store candy section addiction.

Account money gremlins are a real thing, my friend. Whether you’re a kid or an adult!

How to Guide Your Kiddo through the Savings Account Naming Process

I hope I’ve convinced you that that this naming thing? Is sort of a big deal. Getting your child to do it early means you’re setting them up for more savings success for the rest of their lives.

So, let’s get started with this mini-savings action step that makes saving for kids much easier.

Step #1: Set Up Somewhere for your Kid(dos)’ Money to Grow

The first step, of course, is for them to have an actual place to accumulate their money.

  • Don’t have a savings account open for them yet? I’ve got you covered with how to open your baby’s first savings account (whether they’re still a baby or waaaaayyyy past the pacifier stage. No judgment here!).
  • Not ready to do that? Then you’ll want to use a piggy bank of some sort. Here are 21 particularly cool piggy banks for your kid(dos).

Step #2: Help Your Child Identify their Savings Goals

Sit down with your child and ask them what their goals are for their money.

What do they want to buy soon? What do they want to buy later?

Hint: they might not know how to prioritize now rather than later at this point in their lives, and that’s where you can help them.

Your idea for the purpose of their savings account is probably going to be quite different from your child’s. After all, you’ve been in this thing called the “real world” for quite some time now. You aren’t wet behind the ears, and you know that life takes money.

So your ideas may be things they’ll need to purchase in their teen and early adult lives, such as their first car, textbooks for college, college in general, etc.

Their savings goals? Well they might be a bit different than yours. More tangible and instant gratification-y like vacation spending money for the summer or a new video game that’s due to hit the markets next month.

So, it’s best to find some sort of compromise. And if you’re just teaching your child how to save money as well as goal setting in general? Well then you should probably stick with a short-term goal until they grow their instant gratification muscle a bit.

Remember, you can build up to the long-term goals over time.

Step #3: Rename their Account or Piggy Bank with something Cool 

Once they’ve gotten clear on what they want to save for in the short-term (remember, start short, then go long), it’s time to come up with a cool name they can associate with the goal.

This name is one that gets them excited, and can pull them back into the process once they’ve lost interest in savings.

Here are some savings goal ideas, with a spiced-up version on the right side:

  • First Car Fund = Sweet Sixteen Freedom
  • Vacation Spending Money = Boardwalk Money (fill in wherever you’re going)
  • Textbooks = Astronaut textbooks (whatever career they’re interested in right now)
  • Video Game = Pokémon Ultra Sun Release
  • Toy = Stuffed Flamingo

How to Physically Name Your Savings Space with this Goal

How you physically add a name to your savings space (either savings account or jar) depends on where it is.

If you’ve got an actual savings account, then find it below + click for nicknaming instructions:

For us, I have my two-year-old’s savings account at CapitalOne360. At their bank, you can change the “nickname” of each savings account you own.

Here’s how I do this:

Step #1: Sign into the account.

Step #2: Click on the account you want to change the name to.

Step #3: Click “Add a Nickname.”

Step #4: Type in the nickname + click “save.”

Then if I want to change the nickname? I can do so at any time by clicking on the account that I want to change, and then clicking “Account Details.” There’s an option next to the “Account Nickname” to “Change Nickname.”

If you are using a piggy bank of some sort? Then you’ll want to write the new nickname down on a piece of paper and tape it to the bank. You can let your kids write the name + decorate the label however they’d like using crayons, colored pencils, glitter – the works! Whatever gets them excited about their new name + corresponding goal.

You + your child may not have considered the power behind naming savings accounts by the goal that you’re trying to meet before. But I hope you’ll trust me on this one and take the time to not only set up a space for savings, but then name it based on either a short or long-term savings goal.

21 Cool Piggy Banks as Gifts for Kids

Unique piggy banks for kids | looking for cool piggy banks for kids? I've got 21 for you. Not only that, but read to the end for some resources for how to teach your kid to save money. After all, they'll be super interested in the idea once they see their new gift. #uniquepiggybanks #forkids #products| https://www.moneyprodigy.com/21-cool-piggy-banks-gifts-kids/

Cool piggy banks to help the kiddo in your life get excited about saving money. Heck, they might even accumulate some instead of you finding it crumpled up in their jeans pocket!

The piggy bank. It’s kinda the first instrument/tool/resource you can give your kiddo, or your niece, nephew, grandchild, etc. to get them interested in saving money.

Saving money for kids starts simply by giving them a place to start accumulating their extra coins + cash. Instead of leaving a dollar here, $0.50 in their wallet, and finding money crumpled up in the corner of their bedroom…you can now give them a place to store it.

And not only store it, but to watch it grow into something.

Getting a child interested in accumulating money can lead to some really cool outcomes later in their lives, such as them being able to fund their needs + wants + dreams.

In other words, by gifting them one of the cool piggy banks below, you’ll be able to pat yourself on the back down the road when you see them living their lives OUT LOUD.

Choose from one of the 21 unique piggy banks to get the kid(dos) in your life interested in accumulating money (or at least, not spending all of it as soon as it reaches their pocket — which for their age, is a solid start).

FYI: all prices below are estimates, as we all know how much Amazon loves to change prices as the seasons progress.

Pssst: ever wondered why people put coins into pigs, anyway? I mean, why not put coins into cows? Or dogs? Turns out they’ve been doing it for centuries. Check out the history of the piggy bank here so that you can add in a fun story to tell your kid(dos) when you give them their very own!

Piggy Banks with Single-Use Savings Category

These piggy banks have one slot, and one opening to access the money from that slot (yes, gone are the days where you have to smash your piggy bank to get the money out. Could be a good thing, could be a bad thing…depends on how impulsive your little one is!).

Piggy Bank #1: National Geographic’s Glow in the dark moon bank ($14.95)

My 8-year-old, astronaut-obsessed self just got excited – this coin bank is actually made with real meteorite from outer space!

Piggy Bank #2: Pokémon Pokeball Kids Coin Bank ($9.42)

Did you ever give Pokémon GO a whirl? C’mon, tell the truth. I actually tried it out myself after hearing about it from NPR. After several duels in the bread + vegetable aisles at the grocery store, I threw in the towel.

For any little Pokémon fanatics in your life, this is the bank.

Piggy Bank #3: Frozen Elsa Piggy Bank ($7.25)

Fun little fact: my husband is in love with Frozen. He might not admit to it out on the street…but he is. He plays the songs for our little guy on his phone (and may or may not sing along with them).

Any other Frozen fans on your shopping list? Personally, I’m wondering how many coins will actually fit inside this Elsa doll.

Piggy Bank #4: Dog Mechanical Piggy Bank ($19.99)

Two things you need to know: this dog’s name is Bailey…and he eats spare change. Nice way to encourage your kid(dos) to put their coins “away”!

Piggy Bank #5: Emergency Money Bank ($14.97)

Want to start instilling the need to save for an emergency fund? This coin bank is a great conversation starter for that. Bonus: no batteries needed.

Piggy Bank #6: Elephant piggy bank ($12.99)

This one’s so cute, you might just want to scratch under his little trunk.

Piggy Bank #7: Jumbo Coca-Cola Bottle Bank ($24.99)

My grandparents had this two-foot tall Coca-Cola bank…and when they cashed it in after years and years of plunking all their pocket change into it, the total was over $800! Nice.

Piggy Bank #8: 4 Jumbo (20″) Tall Plastic Crayon Piggy Banks ($20.99)

What a cool way to categorize four different reasons to save your money!

Piggy Bank #9: Light Up Kids Railroad Standing Bank ($27.99)

Kid(dos) get immediate gratification when putting their hard-found coins in this giant bank, which lights up as if a train were passing each time a coin is deposited.

Piggy Bank #10: Owl Piggy Bank ($18.99)

Can I just say how super-cute this little guy is? I mean, who couldn’t help but want to feed him nickels and dimes?

Piggy Bank #11: Kate Spade Elephant Bank ($49.95)

Stylish + chic are the words I’d use to describe this Kate-Spade designed elephant bank. Black and white, and would match any décor. Bonus: it’s so stylish that really, it’ll grow with the child.

Heck, I’d like to have this little guy sitting on my library-turned-playroom shelf!

Piggy Bank #12: Paint your own piggy bank ($11.80)

My favorite? The cow. I want to paint the cow! Probably has nothing to do with me growing up on a dairy farm. Nothing at all.

Piggy Bank #13: Digital Coin Counter Savings Jar ($15.99)

There’s a digital LCD screen display that counts and keeps track of the jar’s savings for your kid(dos)! And if they happen to raid the money-candy jar early, or if they want to add some bills instead of coins? They can work on some money skills by using the add/subtract button to report the amount. Another unique part of this bank is that you can just unscrew the lid to get out your cash. That could be a good thing…or a bad thing.

Piggy Bank #14: Cat Stealing Coins Bank ($13.99)

Soooo…there’s this cool cat who apparently likes to pop up and steal your coins when you place them on a certain spot. What kid (or adult, for that matter) wouldn’t try to place more coins on that spot (which happens to lead directly into savings)?

Piggy Bank #15: Doctor Who – Tardis 12th Doctor Talking Money Bank ($24.99)

Any Doctor Who fans out there? Here’s an official Doctor Who product all about getting your kid excited to save their money.

Piggy Banks with Multiple Savings Categories (Save, Tithe, Invest, etc.)

Looking for a piggy bank that will allow your kid(dos) to divvy up their precious dollars into different categories, like tithing, spending, saving, and investing? These banks are for you.

Piggy Bank #16: Moonjar classic piggy bank ($18.99)

This award-winning savings jar allows kids to divvy up their money between saving, spending, and sharing. A Family Guidebook and Passbook are included, and the individual compartments can be taken out, or kept together in one bundle.

Piggy Bank #17: Legos-Looking piggy bank ($20.49)

Have a little person who is really into building blocks? This piggy bank will delight them. I like how the individual containers are transparent, which is one way to get your child to see their money physically growing (or declining, if they decide to use the funds early).

Piggy Bank #18: Fire Truck Coin Bank ($37.95)

My two-year old is obsessed with fire trucks. On a recent visit to PA where my family lives, he actually got to tour one! Which isn’t out of the ordinary, as my Mom’s side of the family owns a firehouse.

The neat thing about this coin bank is there are four chambers for SAVE-INVEST-GIVE-SPEND, with four different exits.

Piggy Bank #19: Surfboards piggy bank ($29.97)

This surfing bank gives your kids the option to put their money in four different categories: spend, give, invest, and save. It actually made an appearance in Oprah Magazine’s Favorite Things section!

Piggy Bank #20: Smart Piggy Trio Bank ($14.99)

This is a set of three boxes with magnetic closures that cover your kid(dos)’ money needs for spending, saving, and sharing. Boxes can be stored together, or taken out as separate components. Also comes with a simple kid’s money guide.

Piggy Bank #21: Money Savvy Pig ($24.99)

I love how transparent the four chambers are with this piggy, one each for: save, spend, donate, and invest. It also comes with stickers to decorate each of the four categories with.

Now that You’ve Picked out a Piggy Bank…

I want to give you a few more resources, as buying your kid(dos) or the children in your life a piggy bank is likely to peak their money interest.

  • Money Conversation Starters for Kids + Families: Don’t be surprised if buying your kid their first piggy bank helps start the money conversation. This is a good thing! I’ve got a free money conversation starter resource for you here that dubs as a fun family dinnertime game.
  • Creative Ways to Help them Fund their Piggy Bank: And how can you help fund your child’s new piggy bank? Well, I’ve got some creative ways to help you fund either their piggy bank, or their savings account.
  • How to Open Your Child’s First Savings Account: The next step after accumulating money in a piggy bank? Is opening a savings account where not only can your child accumulate money, but they can grow it via the awesomeness of compound interest. Once you’re ready to open that savings account, check out my guide for how to open your child’s first savings account.
  • Savings for Your Child Now + in the Future: If your child is not really ready to house money in a savings account, then do this. Give them a piggy bank, then also open the savings account for them. Use this strategy to fund their savings account starting this holiday. They won’t miss at least part of the money, and you can be saving a hefty sum towards their future without them knowing it (at least until they’re old enough to appreciate it).

Family Dinner Games with a Money Twist: Everest Avalanche Dessert Breakout Box

Looking for fun family dinner games for kids (that ALSO teach your child how to save money)? Get my free printable: Dessert Breakout Box - Avalanche on Everest for a really fun reason for your kids to BEG to come to dinner tonight. | https://www.moneyprodigy.com/family-dinner-games-money-twist-everest-avalanche-dessert-breakout-box/

Family dinner games that will teach your kid a specific money lesson + have them begging to sit around the table? #MamaWins.

Mama Bears? You’re about to reach cool-Mom status. Not only that, but your kids will actually want to sit down to a family meal tonight.

Why is that?

On my quest to figure out innovative + experiential ways to teach your kids about money, I’ve come up with an idea that takes the cake (or brownie, or M&Ms, or Heath bars…).

It’s a Dessert Breakout Box. And it’s going down tonight, at your dinner table.

What does this have to do with teaching your kids about money? Well…they have to solve a money puzzle to actually break into dessert tonight.

What is a Dessert Breakout Box Anyway? Plus a Sneak Peek at the Storyline

Breakout boxes are pretty cutting edge in the education realm. Breakout EDU is leading the way with their idea to take an escape room − where a group of people get together and figure out puzzles to escape the room for entertainment − and bringing it to the classroom. They’ve got a stellar Breakout EDU kit, and then there are hundreds of challenges + adventures you can get to go along with it.

I mean, what kid (or adult, for that matter) wouldn’t want to get their hands on one of these?

I’m feeding off this escape-room-turned-box idea even more by bringing it to your dining room table.

And the lessons your kids will learn? Are all about money.

Everest Avalanche Storyline (Sneak Peek)

There’s an oxygen-deprived mad man on the mountain! Your kiddo is part of an expedition team who is stuck up at Camp 1 due to an avalanche cutting off their path. While they wait for helicopter rescue, they  notice that one of their teammates has gone a little crazy. In his oxygen-deprived state, he’s heading UP the mountain instead of down. Even worse, he’s boxed up dessert with a lock and set sneaky codes your kid will need to break in order to get dessert tonight. Not a good thing when your food supply is dwindling anyway.

In order to break into this box and eat the dessert, your kiddo will need to solve one of the three money puzzles included as part of this free printable. It’s your choice which one (and feel free to use the other two for other memorable family dinner games)!

Pre-Work Overview + Details

Mama Bear, you get to choose from one of the three money puzzles that your child has to complete in order to break into their dessert box.

The three money puzzles are:

  1. Money Puzzle #1: Emergency Fund Balance
  2. Money Puzzle #2: Derailed Savings Plan
  3. Money Puzzle #3: Savings Account Purpose

You can pick by: divvying up a different puzzle to each child, choosing one puzzle for the whole family to solve, or by the money lesson you’d like your child to take away from the dinner table tonight.

Get the instructions + free printables by clicking to subscribe below:

How to Get Your Kid(dos) to Beg to Sit down to Dinner Tonight

Get your kid(dos) to beg to sit down to dinner tonight by leaking various hints throughout the day about what’s going down at family dinner time tonight.

Such as:

:: Write on a kitchen chalkboard your dinner menu + “Dessert: Held Captive”
:: Watch the family-appropriate Everest DVD Beyond the Edge with your kids, and tell them their hint for tonight’s dessert is in it
:: [Insert your own idea!]

Use this Dessert Breakout Box to add a second course to dinner the kids will never forget.

Savings Plan for Child – Catch All those Holiday + Birthday Cash Gifts Over the Years

Your kid savings plan: it starts this coming Christmas or even on their birthday. Plus I interview 8 moms (1 father) who have been using this method since birth, and they reveal how much savings their child has accumulated. Money challenge met! Savings plan for child. | https://www.moneyprodigy.com/savings-plan-for-child/

Potty trained. Check. Savings plan for child. Check (at least after today!).

I want you to say this with me, Mama Bear:

“From this holiday and birthday onward, I will set aside 50% of each of my child’s money gifts into their savings account.”


Making this one commitment will change the money course of your child’s future.

Yes, they might whine at you.

Yes, they might have their hearts set on something to purchase in a store with that money.

Psst: I did say 50%, not 100%, for this savings plan for child. So they could certainly still spend some of the money on themselves. Otherwise this savings plan for child might fail!

But when they turn 18, and you can hand over a savings account with (potentially) several thousand dollars in it − made up of $5 here, $25 there − they’re going to be über grateful that you did this for them.

Why? Because it’s textbook money for college. It’s first-apartment-deposit money. It’s car money. Wouldn’t you have loved it if YOUR parents had handed an account over to you with several thousand dollars in it before being thrust out into the real world?

8 Actual Parents Who Have Been Doing This + How Much It’s Reaped for their Kid(dos)

I started doing this myself – at 100% contributions of any cash gifts we receive ($110 so far! We’ll likely decrease the percentage once he figures out how a store works) – starting at our little guy’s birth. But he’s only 21 months old, and I want to know how this will play out for you (and me!) over the years.

So, I found several mothers who had started doing this when their kid(dos) were very young to see how it’s turning out for them.

After posing this question in several different Facebook Groups, I found that among 8 different families, the range of savings accounts from using this method is between $850 all the way up to $20,000! In other words, from covering two semesters’ worth of college textbooks, all the way to several semesters’ actual tuition cost.

Here’s a breakdown:

  • Jill (*name changed) daughter, 11: $850 in a savings account thanks to employing this method.
  • Jane (*name changed) son, 13: “What I have done with him is every time we go and see my parents for the last several years, when my Dad gives me $50, I set it aside and put it into my son’s bank account. I take him with me when I do this. I’m custodian to his savings account, which has about $3,500 in it right now.”
  • Ryan Inman, son, 2: “Contributions from grandparents towards college has been the primary reason for opening the account. Most of it makes it to the 529, some saved here for other investments. My son turns 3 in sept and has 12k in it. Started the account a few months after he was born.”
  • Jesse M Fearon, children aged 19 months, 4, and 5: We’ve had savings accounts for them “since they were born (well, since we received their SSN numbers in the mail after they were born). It’s just a simple savings account but we deposit all money in that account until they are 3, then the rule is they can keep the cash (if it’s less than $10) and any checks are deposited into their savings account. We don’t give our children birthday gifts, instead we deposit money into their savings accounts for their birthdays. Our children are 5, 4, and 19 months old. Our oldest has the most saved since he’s been around longer, but all of our children have over a $1,000 in their accounts.”
  • Holly Porter Johnson, 6 and 8: “I’ve been saving my kids birthday money since they were babies. I add it to their 529’s. They each have around $10,000 And they’re 6 and 8?.”
  • Emma Healey, son, 5: “My 5 yr old has $2800. I bank all the gifts his grandparents send over. They live in a different country so always send cash and tell me to buy something nice for him but instead I buy him a $1 toy from the thrift store and bank the rest.”
  • Lee Huff, 2 and 6: “We started saving $100 a month in a 529 in my name for each child when we found out we were pregnant. Then we transferred the money into their names after they were born and had a SSN. Instead of birthday gifts, we ask people to contribute to their 529 instead. They’re now 6 and 2 and have a combined $20,000 in their 529s.”
  • Robert Farrington, 9 months, 3: “We have two kids, one is 3 and the other is just 9 months. We’ve put every cash gift they’ve ever received into the account. My oldest, at 3, has $1,700 in their account. My younger one has $1,000. We plan to continue to save all their cash gifts this way.”

Wow. Inspiring, right? Remember that when it comes time to hand over these accounts to the kids (who won’t be kids anymore, but very young adults), they’re not going to remember that toddler-sized Elsa doll they weren’t allowed to buy with their money, or the latest video game they would have conquered in a few weeks anyway. They’re going to be super grateful to have had a mother with the foresight to know their child was going to need money to start their adult life. Besides, saving money for kids could also help steer them away from a paycheck-to-paycheck mentality. Your savings plan for child starts today!

How to Stop Your Child from Developing a Paycheck to Paycheck Mentality

Does your kid have an allowance-to-allowance mentality? Saving money for kids doesn't have to be hard. Teach kids this vital life skills set BEFORE they head down the path of paycheck-to-paycheck living. |  https://www.moneyprodigy.com/saving-money-for-kids/

Saving money for kids can be a difficult concept to get. In fact, natural mode for many kids (and adults) is to live allowance-to-allowance. Let’s look at how to break your child’s paycheck-to-paycheck mentality before they even get started adulting.

One thing I’ve heard over and over from working with adults + their money is how they hate living paycheck to paycheck.

In case you’re one of the lucky ones who’s broken free from this, let me give you a quick refresher of the life you (gladly) left behind: living paycheck to paycheck means when your paycheck ends, you’re unable to meet your financial obligations. In other words, there’s no savings and/or passive income coming in to keep your money momentum going…and yet the bills don’t stop coming, do they?

Psst: not sure if you’re living this life? Just ask yourself what happens if your next paycheck doesn’t come. Squeezed past that one? The next one after that doesn’t come either. How would that play out? If it’s looking scary as heck with a fire thrown in, then you’re living paycheck to paycheck.

This puts an even greater risk to you and your household in the event of unemployment. Sure, you might get unemployment insurance, but it’s a fraction of what your usual paycheck would be (which was mainly spoken for already).

Being one big car repair away from landing back on your mother’s (um, that’s you) couch is not what we want for your child, either. So, we’ve got to plant the seed that will stop this from ever starting.

Does Your Child Have an Allowance-to-Allowance Mentality?

Does your child currently live an allowance-to-allowance mentality? In other words, they spend all their money as soon as they get it, chomping at the bit for that next bit of allowance to flow into their lives and keep all their amazing wants afloat?

That’s a seed to paycheck-to-paycheck living.

Maybe it won’t lead directly to a paycheck-to-paycheck life. But it certainly seems like it could, right? Not to mention 50% of Americans live this reality, so it doesn’t seem like such a far stretch.

We want to keep your child securely in the other half of that 50%.

Let’s change that now, when losing their next paycheck doesn’t mean piling on tons of debt.

It’s time to break that allowance-to-allowance mentality by teaching your child to save their money first from week to week, and then from month to month.

Pssst: looking for a really unique, engaging way to teach your child to save money? Be sure to check out my Mt. Everest Money Simulation by clicking the image below.

Teach children to save through the Mt. Everest Money Simulation Program.

Wait a Sec…My Child Has Already Developed an Allowance-to-Allowance Mentality

Rest assured, Mama Bear. You’ve got time to turn this money ship around.

Saving money for kids doesn’t have to be hard. Instead, it can be incremental.

I’ve got some tweaks you can make to your current allowance system that I’m numbering from least aggressive to most aggressive. Sometimes your child will get the hint (the least aggressive option) and other times it’s going to take a bit gentler nudging.

Note to yourself: doesn’t matter which one they take to. No judging here! We’re looking for results, and each child is different. If your child needs one over the other it doesn’t mean anything.

Also, one may be more appropriate for where your child’s money development is than another. Or you might fear being too controlling or helicopter-y, in which case you’ll want to pick one of the more hands-off approaches while still (hopefully) getting the result you want.

Allowance Tweak #1: Pair their Allowance with an Incentive Program

Saving money for kids could be as simple as giving them an incentive. Heck, it works for adults!

Introduce an incentive, just like banks have, when your child saves part of their money. But only for the dollars that make it past the allowance period. For each dollar left at your next allowance rollout, give them $0.25. Or $0.50. Or $1.00.

How will this change your child’s savings mentality?

Depending on how chiseled your child’s instant gratification muscle is, you could start with a one-week incentive, a bi-weekly incentive, or a full-month incentive. Pick the one that is a stretch, but not outside of the realm of their ability.

Allowance Tweak #2: Stretch their Allowance by One-Notch

The longer the time in between when they get allowances, the more they’ll have to adapt to planning, budgeting, and actually saving their money.

So stretch their allowance period one notch up from wherever it’s at right now.


  • On-Demand: If you’re doling out money on-demand, then instill a weekly allowance ritual to introduce the concept of waiting + budgeting their money.
  • Weekly: Take their allowance to bi-weekly.
  • Bi-weekly: Take their allowance to monthly.

Allowance Tweak #3: Tweak the Amount You’re Giving Them

Hand over a few purchasing responsibilities to your child, but don’t actually give them enough in each of their allowance payments to cover both what they want AND what you have told them they are responsible to pay for.

I mean, how many of us adults get paid enough in each of our paychecks to cover everything we want AND need at the moment? Not many (certainly not me!).

This means if they don’t learn to carry over (i.e. that dirty word, “save”) money from one allowance payday to the next, then they never get what they want. Or they make an even worse decision, and not buy what they need, making the lesson hit home even harder.

Eventually, they’ll get the hint.

Note: I think this one will need to include some conversations from you to remind them that you are fully giving them enough money to buy the things they want + are responsible for, but they need to manage their money differently in order to see it happen. Talk about a teachable money moment!

What this could look like to increase saving money for kids:

  • You let your child know they are now responsible for a few extras they’ve been sneaking onto the grocery list (aka a ‘want’, such as that really expensive designer shampoo you’ve never even purchased for yourself), plus something that has previously been paid for and chosen by you (aka a ‘need’, such as their backpack for next school year).
  • Figure out how much extra they should receive in order to be able to cover these extra responsibilities you’ve given them. In other words, figure out how much you, as a responsible and budgeting adult, would be comfortable paying for each item. Then if the child wants to splurge to the next level, they’ll have to figure out whether or not spending their own money on the extra is worth it + how to actually save up to make it happen.
  • Increase their allowance amount to account for the extra costs they’re now responsible for, but not so much that they can pay for the items in one fell swoop. How far should you stretch it out? Well, that’s up to how far along you think their instant gratification muscle has developed.

Pick one of these allowance tweaks, and go with it. Test it out for a month or two, and then tweak it or move on per your child’s taking to the actual lesson you’re trying to impart: curtailing the allowance-to-allowance mentality by having them discover the need to save their money.

Myown’s 14-year Old Spends his Money As Soon as he Gets it. Here’s the Solution We Came up With.

Teach kids to save money with this one allowance system tweak that helped 14-year old Spike stop spending his money as soon as he gets it. Hint: no jars involved. | https://www.moneyprodigy.com/myowns-14-year-old-spends-money-soon-gets-heres-solution-came/

Teach children to save by using this one small tweak that worked for Mama Bear Myown and her 14-year old son, Spike.

The first Friday of the month is a very intriguing one for 14-year old Spike. He gets paid $100, which represents his entire months’ allowance.

His mother, Myown, says, “I put it in his bank account the first Friday of the month like a payday and he has a bank card. So he can go to the bank or use the card out like an adult because he’s almost one.”

This once-a-month allowance system was going great for them. Except there was only one problem: it wasn’t getting across the money lesson his mother wanted to teach her son.

Pssst: looking for a really unique, engaging way to teach your child to save money? Be sure to check out my Mt. Everest Money Simulation by clicking the image below.

Teach children to save through the Mt. Everest Money Simulation Program.

Money Behavior this Mama Bear Wanted to Change

Myown, Mama Warrior of The Polished VA, and mother to Spike (14 years old), Tom (7 years old), Jerry (5 years old), and Tike (4 years old), wanted her eldest son to start saving up for larger items.

In her mind, this meant saving money from one month to the next without spending it on something frivolous – a bit a stretch-goal when your teen is just starting to work out their delayed gratification muscle.

And Spike just wasn’t getting there with their current allowance system.

With that $100, Myown expected Spike to pay for extras such as bowling + movies with his friends, and facial wash. But bridging that gap between paying for an $8.00 movie ticket + $4.50 hot dog all the way to paying for $55 new shoes is where she was having trouble.

Her money behavior she wanted to change: “I’m trying to teach our teen about saving his money instead of just spending it as soon as he gets some. For example he get $100/month for things to pay for such as his bowling, movies, and facial wash (items that he needs and then things that he often likes to do with his friends). Saving towards something big like (new shoes that are coming out or new laptop) instead of feeling like he has to spend the money on eating out or picking up something he doesn’t need.”

The Tweak to Myown’s Allowance System that Yielded Impressive Results

Bridging that money gap between one month to the next is actually a hard concept for many adults to get, let alone kids.

So instead of starting with that big-kahuna goal, I asked Myown to scale back on both her expectation as well as her allowance.

Solution: Divide her $100/month allowance into two, and give it twice per month, just like a bi-weekly paycheck.

Of course, savings in this sense will only be on a two-week time table, but it sounds like he needs to start on short-term savings goals before moving onto bigger ones.

It’s what I like to call time releasing your money, and I’ve recommended it to adults for years. The good news? It can work for kids as well.

Spike’s Progress, Two Months Later

I reached out to Myown two months from our initial talk to see how things were going and if she had used my idea.

Myown said that she is using the solution, and “…he’s actually using his money less. I also let him keep an account of his own money so juggles it better. For example he saved his money so he could buy his brothers and us Christmas gifts from himself. He was so excited that he made the purchases with his own money.”

She took things a step further, and “…tried the item with finding a goal of something he wants to purchase and making that his screen shot. Then when he thinks of spending his money on frivolous items he sees that and changes his mind. Right now, his goal is man uggz.”

Spike has been offered a spot in his high school’s finance program as well, which has the nation’s only student-run stock room. So he’s stoked about that. He’s also decided to begin designing tshirts to sell. Since Myown owns her own business, she’s walking him the steps of how to set up his own shop online.

Myown says, “Thank you so much. I want him to be able to handle his own finances when he leaves for school.”

Pssst: looking for a really unique, engaging way to teach your child to save money? Be sure to check out my Mt. Everest Money Simulation by clicking the image below.

Teach children to save through the Mt. Everest Money Simulation Program.

Steal this Amish Blueprint for Managing Your Child’s Paycheck

Amish Blueprint: How to save money for kids by managing their paychecks. Learn kids money management life skills, and walk away with some great ideas. |  https://www.moneyprodigy.com/how-to-save-money-for-kids-steal-amish-blueprint/

Learn how to save money for kids + how to manage your child’s paycheck with this Amish blueprint. The outcome is impressive!

The Amish provide an interesting case study when figuring out how to deal with your own child’s paycheck once they start bringing in the dough. Not only that, but how to save money for kids from that paycheck…even when your kiddo wants to spend, spend, spend.

Why is that?

Well, Amish kids start working + earning paychecks pretty early on in life. Like, in the 8th grade, after they graduate from school altogether.

The Amish are very aware that handing over an entire paycheck to a 13-14 year old child would be stupid. They’ve essentially had to come up with, then hone, a foolproof way to deal with their child’s paycheck from an early age.

We’ll get into much more detail about this in a bit, but first, let me introduce you to the Amish man who made this article possible.

Meet Leroy, My Father’s Primary Amish Taxi Client

I guess before I introduce Leroy, I should back up and explain my father’s job as an Amish Taxi driver. Most people stop me there, anyway.

My father has been a full-time Amish Taxi Driver in Lancaster, PA for 14 years.

The business is very much based on referrals and word-of-mouth from other, happy, Amish clients. At any given time your phone rings, an Amish person, who cannot own their own vehicle (or only in rare situations that likely revolve around their business, in which case they own a vehicle but hire a full-time driver) asks if you’re available at a certain time on a certain date to take them to wherever they’d like to go.

The pay is pretty good; one college summer I worked this job as a backup when my other job fell through and earned $3,000. That’s from making $0.60/mile + $10/hour waiting time (as they run their errands in stores, visit with friends and family, attend doctor’s appointments, etc.).

Leroy happens to be my father’s primary employer. This father of five, ranging in age from 3 to 21, owns a construction company. He hires my father to drive him around to in-state and out-of-state construction sites once a week to check up on his crews.

I say he’s my father’s primary employer, but really, he’s become a friend of our family.

One day several years ago I got the chance to ride around with he and my father for six hours and ask him all kinds of questions regarding handling his children’s paychecks and how to save money for kids. And a few days ago, I asked even more questions over my father’s phone to him to follow-up on a few things.

How the Amish Get Around Paying an Allowance

There is no allowance given to Amish children.

However, Leroy says that they do give their kids spending money for special occasions. Just not money given on a regular basis.

Instead, Amish kids generally go to school until the 8th grade, and then start making money of their own. Upon graduation they apprentice with someone or otherwise find employment. And employment can be for an Englishman (what the Amish call non-Amish in America), but only if they know and trust that Englishman (for example, one of Leroy’s eldest sons used to mow my father’s lawn during the summertime for extra cash, a job that came about because of my father’s special relationship with Leroy).

This paycheck that the kids start receiving around 8th grade is the source of their spending money. And it’s also the source of much, much more having to do with their future.

Psst: Curious if the Amish pay taxes?

Why Amish Children Do Not Get their Entire Paycheck to Spend as they Please

Amish children do not get to keep their entire paychecks to spend. Which is a good thing for three reasons:

  • Early Substantial Earnings: Amish kids start earning money at an early age, so probably wouldn’t have the know-how to deal with that kind of money. Leroy mentioned that if you were to hand over all their money to them, they’d spend it on stuff that doesn’t amount to anything. And he’s looking for how to save money for kids in order to satisfy the next two requirements.
  • Early Money Responsibility: The Amish are expected to be very self-sufficient at a pretty young age in regards to paying for things − such as coming up with a down payment for a home. For example, Leroy estimated that his son will purchase his first home between the ages of 18 and 19, with a $15,000 – $20,000 down payment. I’m not sure of too many Englishmen kids who could do the same! Leroy says the typical age to purchase a home for an Amish person is at the age of 21, so he’s expecting his son to be able to do so a bit early.
  • No Health Insurance: Amish do not have traditional health insurance, and so all Amish adults are expected to pay large sums of money towards their own children’s health needs + the needs of those in the community who come upon bills equaling hundreds of thousands of dollars. In essence, it’s a community-based health insurance plan.

Because of this unique money situation, the Amish have come up with a pretty interesting blueprint for not only managing their children’s paychecks, but to solve the puzzle of how to save money for kids so that they can achieve significant financial feats at a very young age.

The Amish Blueprint for Managing Your Child’s Paychecks

Growing up on the edge of the Amish community, I had heard the type of rumor a hard-working teenager never wants to hear: Amish kids were given 25% of their paychecks to spend as they please, but had to hand over the other 75% to their parents.

Honestly, I thought that was absurd as a teenager. I mean, wasn’t it unfair that I was doing the work − mucking horse stalls and babysitting − but I had to fork over my paycheck for my parents to control?

But why they do this and how it ends up playing out is a pretty darn good blueprint (I can say that now, as an adult. Your own child may feel differently).

Amish Blueprint:

  • Spending Money: It turns out that the 25% rumor was incorrect. It’s even less than that (at least to begin with!). All of Leroy’s children’s needs are paid for by Leroy and his wife. Leroy then gives his eldest son, who at the time of this interview was earning $120 at a market on Saturdays + working in one of Leroy’s construction crews four days per week, 10% of his paycheck to spend as he pleases. Leroy says that the more “liberal” Amish will give their children up to 50% to spend as they please. But he adds that 10% is the normal amount. As the kids get older and they need more money, this gets bumped up.
  • Investment Money: Leroy invests 10% of his son’s paycheck for his son’s future. Each year the amount Leroy invests towards his son’s future increases by 10% (so 10% the first year of work, then 20% the second year, and so on). Leroy says the Amish aren’t big on the stock market. Instead, they invest in what’s called Amish Helping Hands. This group then helps other Amish in the community in the form of low-interest loans (currently 3.25% for mortgages and 3.50% for farmers) to Amish farmers and first-time homeowners. Interest is paid on investments twice a year or reinvested, and the expense ratio is 0.25%. It’s a solid investment model, because Amish have an excellent track record of paying any debts owed.
  • Household Money: The rest of the money goes towards Leroy’s household.

But wait, there’s more.

Rental Income is Added In

Since the initial interview was several years ago, I took the opportunity to call my Dad while he was driving Leroy and ask him a few more follow-up questions on the phone about how to save money for kids + manage their paychecks.

It turns out, Leroy’s eldest son did end up buying that house at the age of 18. It’s a two-unit rental property, and he’s got a 10-year mortgage on it. So he earns almost enough from it to pay for the mortgage and upkeep, then will have the property paid off before he turns 30. Impressive!

At the age of 21, which his eldest son will reach in just a few months, he will no longer hand over any of his paycheck money to his father. Instead, he gets to keep it while also living at home rent-free + earning the rental income.

When he does eventually get married and move out of the house? He’ll likely keep this property as a rental property, and buy a new home for him and his wife to move into.

Sounds like a budding real estate mogul to me! Except that Leroy says this is pretty typical in their community − to buy a rental property, live at home until you’re married, and invest/save a good bit of your paycheck from the age of 13 or 14 onwards.

What You Can Take Away from this Blueprint

While it’s not likely your own child will have saved up enough money by the age of 18 to buy a rental property − after all, you’ll hopefully discourage them from dropping out of school in the 8th grade to work full-time − you can still glean lots of ideas from this blueprint on how to save money for kids + manage your child’s paycheck at an early age that will help them achieve some fantastic financial maneuvers.

Your own blueprint can look like this:

  • Your teen gets a job.
  • You both sit down after the first paycheck is earned, and figure out what percentage is appropriate for them to spend, and what percentage is appropriate for them to save. Leroy used a 10/10/80 rule, with 10% for spending, 10% for investing, and 80% to his household, with built-in investment + spending increases + a decreases in the household amount as each year passed. Note: Percentages are best, as their paycheck will likely fluctuate with increased earnings, or from being paid hourly.
  • You open up a custodial savings account with them (find out how to score a bonus $25 for doing so).
  • You open up a custodial checking account for them, or funnel their paycheck through your own checking account.
  • They have their paychecks automatically deposited into the checking account you’ll be using.
  • You set up automatic withdrawals into their savings account from the checking account, proportionate to the amount you both agreed on to save.
  • At the age of “majority” (18 or 21, depending on the state you live in) the account gets turned over to them.

Now it’s your turn. Have you figured out how to save money for kids from their paycheck? How do you manage your child’s paycheck, or how do you want to manage it moving forward? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this in the comments below.