As the author of 4 children’s financial education books, they invite me to talk with children, teachers and parents about the subject. When the conversation is with children (from 4 years), some important questions attract my attention and they do not vary according to the economic condition of the student.
What children want!
The first aspect to highlight is the consumer behavior already present in these children, they are small large consumers of various product categories: toys, clothing, travel. As they obviously do not have their own income, they consume all these products with the income of their parents or other relatives.
Stimulated by the propaganda that reaches them in any way, they know what products they want to have and what their brands are. Just watch one of the children’s TV channels to witness the bombardment of advertising that encourages them to consume the most diverse launches of the toy and entertainment industry.
It would be up to parents to stop this behavior, but many end up stimulating more consumption for various reasons.
Many parents did not have a childhood with material goods and believe that their children do not have the same deprivations they had. Other parents believe, in turn, that material good can compensate for the lack of time they spend with their children. In the end, professional success demands a great dedication and this same success is what guarantees the quality of life of the family. For them, there is no other way.
Rewards and Dreams
A second aspect observed is that for children, work serves to earn money and for sure, that opinion is formed from the observation that children have of the adults around them.
Limiting the value of work only to the material reward can greatly harm the training of children as there are more values linked to work.
One of the most important reasons for working is the possibility of working through, achieving a realization as a person capable of doing something with competence and doing something with passion.
Another important aspect of the work is that it allows us to help other people, since our work could improve the lives of other people.
Finally, another observation is that many of the children summarize their dreams in a future in which they can be rich and at this point it should be noted that it occurs in groups of children from private schools where a large part of the families of these schools come from living under a pattern of high level life.
What is sad because it is in childhood is when we must have the most diverse dreams, it is at this time that we can dream that we are astronauts, the next week a soccer player and after a while we dream of being doctors.
Money must be the consequence, not the objective and children should be taught to understand that.