Learning about budgets a perfect gift for children?
Thursday, December 06, 2012 10:00 AM
There's a possibility we might be branded a Christmas grinch, but we'd like to pass along to you some thoughts about teaching kids about the value of a dollar.
Jennifer Willhite, a reporter for The Columbus Republic newspaper, wrote a story this week about how parents can use Christmas to teach their children about how far a dollar stretches.
Talk about taking the "merry" out of Christmas.
Willhite interviewed Laura Berry, a therapist with Centerstone in Columbus, who believes the holidays are a great time to teach kids about the value of budgeting.
"Setting limits on spending teaches children how to set limits for themselves," Berry told the newspaper. "It also teaches self-discipline and self-worth, and improves communication between you and your child."
Willhite reported that to determine how much money a child should receive for gifts, take the time to help them prepare a list of who they want to shop for and make notes about possible gifts for each recipient.
Teach children that gift-giving is a great way to show someone how much they care, but it isn't a good reason to go into debt.
Amen, to that.
Berry said it's important to children to understand that there are natural consequences for overspending. If they overspend on one person, resist the urge to cough up a little more cash and instead help them make choices.
" This also is a great time to encourage a little thrifty creativity. Help children make some of their gifts to help stretch those holiday dollars," Berry told the newspaper.
Listen ... we know that Berry is right. Kids need to learn the value of a dollar.
But the rainbow side of our otherwise black and white brain screams that Christmas is no time to give a child an Economics 101 lesson.
"Oh, the Who-manity," said the grinch.