Kids' styles with money start early, and a new study shows key habits are already formed by age 7. Here's how you can relate.
It's all happening so fast. If there are kids in your life, you'll know exactly what I mean - you just blink and suddenly they're tweens going on 20.
Cambridge University and the UK Money Advice Service have just published a new joint study which shows that important money habits and attitudes get formed even earlier than previously thought - by age 7!
Those absorbing brains are taking in money matters more than we realised, and the critical role of parents and early educators is more in the spotlight than ever.
By age 7, most children grasp the value of money, understand that money can be exchanged for stuff and get what it means to earn an income. They are capable of planning ahead, delaying a decision and understanding that some choices cannot be reversed.
All of this, however, does not mean you should run your 4 year old through the virtues of compound interest or the inner workings of the capital markets. The study points out that children set their habits through the attitudes and behaviours that we model for them.
So maybe we should be taking them grocery shopping more and explaining our everyday choices. Do not underestimate your influence, the study says.
But if the children in your life are above that tender age of 7, how can you find ways to relate to the money personality they've already developed?
At Sorted, with the help of a clinical psychologist, we've identified 16 different money styles that children can have. We've put them into a fun website to help kids find theirs and have a look at their friends' styles, too.
My Money Style is a newly developed online tool for tweens, based on their personalities and the values they have. Do you have a money magician at home? Or a budget boss in class? After these quick 21 questions, you'll find out.
For each money style, there are also pointers for parents and teachers on how to interact with that kind of kid. So they find out more about themselves, and you'll figure out ways to connect with your little cash captain.
The Get Sorted Blog is written by Sorted's resident blogger, Tom Hartmann. You can check out more, including guides and calculators, at sorted.org.nz. Sorted is proudly brought to you by the Commission for Financial Literacy and Retirement Income.