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Help Your Child Develop the Habit of Saving

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child and piggy bank

April 27, 2010

Teaching your child to save money will have lifetime benefits. Even if you’re not a great saver yourself, it’s never too late to learn – and doing it together is a valuable experience for you and your child.

“If there’s a silver lining to this recession, it’s learning about the importance of having some money put away,” said the County’s consumer expert, Patti Wooten Swanson.  “Good financial habits are like good eating habits: they’re easy to learn and the benefits will last your whole life.”

Tuesday, April 27, is national Teach Children to Save Day, and Wooten Swanson offers the following tips:

  • Make (or purchase) and decorate a piggy bank – preferably see-through so children can watch their progress.
  • Help children set and work toward a modest, short-term savings goal, such as buying a toy.
  • Consider setting a family goal for something such as a holiday celebration or camping trip, then talk about and work together to reach the goal.
  • Match savings: Offer to put in a matching contribution to the money your child saves (or give non-monetary rewards such as stickers or a special outing).
  • Help your child open a savings account, and make regular deposits.
  • Make saving fun by making a visual chart so children can monitor their progress, such as a “savings thermometer,” or play games, such as those on the H.I.P. Pocket Change site sponsored by the U.S. mint.
  • Be an example to your children. Let them know how you save money.
  • Learn more at

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