Thursday, May 8, 2008

Teaching Children About Money - Part 2 - Giving

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This is part of a series regarding teaching children about money. To read Part 1 - Credit, click here.

There is another part of money management that I feel should be a big part of everyone's budget. It is called charitable giving. We personally call it tithing, but regardless of what it is called, it should be giving back just a portion (10% or more) of the blessings that you have received.

I will not go into the whys of tithing, but just offer that I believe that if you give, it will come back to bless you. Even when you don't think you have it to give, if you make the effort to make it a priority in your budget, God will remember that.

So, the basic tithe is 10% as taught Biblically. The best way to instill this in a child is to make it automatic from a very early age. Teach them from the beginning that small portion is always for giving and should not be used personally. The more of a habit it is from a young age, the more easily it will be when they are truly introduced to our (mostly) selfish and materialistic society.

How do you teach this?

First, designate a piggy bank that will be solely for this purpose. Make it a craft project one day, explaining all along what its purpose will be. Here are some suggestions: DLTK, Associated Content, Enchanted Learning, My Craftbook, HGTV, Squigly's, or Kaboose. Or just google it and find one you like...the possibilities are almost endless. Or if you want to teach an envelope system early, you can use one of these as well, although you will most probably be dealing with small change at first.

Next give them money divided into tenths. For instance, if they earn a dollar (via allowance, chores, gifts, etc), give it to them in dimes and teach them that when they have 10 of something, one is always put aside for giving.

Teach them that if they want to give any more above that tenth that it too will be honored, but that is based solely on what God wants them to do. If you are not a Christian, you can choose to put a secular twist on this, but since I am writing it from my point of view (which happens to be a Christian one), that is the way I would word it.

The next opportunity you have to give this money (church service or time to donate to charity, as it applies), make sure they are an active part of contributing their portion. Don't take it out and do it for them, but make sure they know where their money is going.

Soon, they will not even think twice and such donations!

Continue here to Part 3 - Saving


  1. Great post! I was taught this from an early age, and 30 years later it's the "normal" thing to do. has a neat children's bank that's divided into 3 sections: church (tithe), bank (savings), and store (spending money). It gives children a good visual of where their moneys going. My son got one for Christmas and it works really well for him. It's priced around $12. - a good investment:)

  2. Thanks for the tip on the bank at Christianbook. That's a great idea--and it doesn't break OUR bank!