Teaching the value of money and saving

Stacks of coins

As parents, your young ones look up to you as their role models. This puts you in the best position to help shape your preschooler’s thinking about money and saving. Research shows that children form their money habits by age seven.1 A CIBC surveyabout why few parents speak to their kids about money. Opens a new window in your browser. finds that few parents speak to their kids about money, mainly because they believe them to be too young to understand. 

Give your kids a head start and impress on them the value of money and saving today. Engage them in fun activities to help them build financial confidence and security. 

Five dimes and a toonie

Children often associate quantity with value — two is better than one, ten is better than five. Help them understand that this isn’t always true. Show them five dimes and a toonie or other coin combinations, and explain their denominations and values. You can play this activity anytime, anywhere.

Piggy bank saving

An allowance can be a good way for children to learn about money. For example, you can give your children an appropriate amount of money regularly and talk to them about what they can do with this money. During these conversations, you can introduce to them the concept of saving.

Saving money in a piggy bank helps children develop a financial discipline. Encourage your kids to save a regular amount of their allowance each week for their piggy bank. Allow your kids to buy a treat or other things with the rest of their allowance. Once their piggy bank is full, head to CIBC with them to deposit their savings. It’s never too early to save!

Piggy bank with a dollar bill.

The three little pigs

Use 3 piggy banks to teach your children about using their money for different financial goals. This also helps them develop a broader understanding of how they can use money. They can take their allowance, gift money or any change they might find in the sofa and divide their money into 3 categories: saving (for longer-term goals like a new bicycle), spending (for short-term wants like a toy) and giving (for someone in need or a contribution to a local cause).

You know your children best. Tailor these activities to your needs, add them to playtime and remember to have fun!

1 Habit Formation and Learning in Young Children, Dr. David Whitebread and Dr. Sue Bingham, University of Cambridge, 2013.