Money Doesn't Grow on Trees: A Parent's Guide to Raising Financially Responsible Children

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Are you worried about your children's financial future? Then whatever their ages, now is the time to teach them the money skills they will need every day of their lives.

Neale S. Godfrey is not only an expert in family finance but also a parent who puts her advice to work in her own home. Chairman of the Children's Financial Network, mother of two, and a frequent commentator on national television, Godfrey has designed a unique program for kids-- from those as young as three to ...

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Overview

Are you worried about your children's financial future? Then whatever their ages, now is the time to teach them the money skills they will need every day of their lives.

Neale S. Godfrey is not only an expert in family finance but also a parent who puts her advice to work in her own home. Chairman of the Children's Financial Network, mother of two, and a frequent commentator on national television, Godfrey has designed a unique program for kids-- from those as young as three to those in their teens-- that teaches them how to earn, save, and spend money wisely while it lets parents clearly communicate their family's values. Using age-appropriate exercises and concrete examples, Godfrey shows parents how to deal with a variety of tough situations such as:

Your teenage daughter desperately wants a $75.00 pair of designer jeans and there's only money in the budget for a moderately priced pair. Do you give her the money?

Your five-year-old wants an allowance. Should he get it if he doesn't do his chores?

Your daughter's best friend is going to Florida on vacation. How do you explain why your family can't go?

What and why do your kids need to know about your finances?

For parents who want to teach their kids the value of money and personal values, there's no better guide than "Money Doesn't Grow On Trees".

In a clear, concise, and easy-to-understand format, Godfrey, the chairman of The Children's Financial Network, shows parents of children ages three to sixteen how to foster a sense of financial understanding and responsibility that will last a lifetime.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Carol Raker Collins
This revised, updated version of a book that trains parents how to raise financially self-reliant children is still a timely topic. Bankruptcy and debt are on the rise among young adults. Here one learns that a parent can guide children from the age of two through eighteen to instill in them good budgeting habits and financial savvy. Age-appropriate games, outings, and explanations about money are some of the training techniques. There are effective and fun tips on how and when to start allowances, to arrange chores, and to segregate expenses and savings. An important distinction is made between "work for pay" and unpaid work expected by all "Citizens of the Household." A distinction is also made between those things that are money-related and those that are strictly behavior-related. Problem-solving and problem-prevention techniques are included. For example, if a child gets into the habit of borrowing from savings, the money should be put into a bank or locked strongbox. Or, if an older offspring returns home or stays at home into adulthood, a lease arrangement should be set up. Specifics about consumer choices, compounding savings, bank accounts, investment options, taxes, and wills are touched upon. This is a lot of material. There is a glossary, which can be used to review the child's financial growth periodically. However, it is possible that the parent will need training even beyond this book to be a good guide to children. Both the parent and the child may need to learn together.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780671511708
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
  • Publication date: 1/1/1995
  • Format: Cassette
  • Edition description: Abridged
  • Product dimensions: 4.22 (w) x 6.86 (h) x 0.92 (d)

Meet the Author

Neale S. Godfrey writes a weekly Associated Press column and is the author of fourteen books that address money in the context of life skills and values. She has made numerous appearances on such television shows as The Oprah Winfrey Show, Good Morning America, and Today, and she is the founder of Children's Financial Network, Inc.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

What Kind of (Financial) Personality Do You and Your Children Have?

All through history and saturating our literature are references to the greed and generosity of human beings. The name Scrooge has become synonymous with "tightwad"; Carnegie has come to represent cultural generosity. Who knows or remembers what Mr. Rockefeller did except give lots and lots of money to charity. Archie Bunker, on the other hand, was known to shut the blinds and turn out all the lights on Halloween to avoid giving out free candy to children.

The truth is that money affects us. No matter how much we have or don't have, it affects our mood, our marriage, our goals, our dreams, and our personalities.

In America, our great land of opportunity, the 1980s proved to be the decade of the spender. The indication thus far is that the 1990s will be governed by the savers. (We'll see who's left standing at the turn of the century, won't we?)

You are one of these, and the saving or spending part of your personality influences your child. Do you know if you are a spender or a saver? The following is a fourteen-question quiz to determine which financial personality type you are:

THE ADULT FINANCIAL PERSONALITY TYPE QUIZ

1. Do you find yourself thinking about money often?

Yes __ No __

2. Do you love watching your bank account grow?

Yes __ No __

3. If you inherited a great deal of money today, would you save the bulk of it?

Yes __ No __

4. Do you use your credit cards to the limit?

Yes __ No __

5. Are you perpetually in debt at the end of each month?

Yes __ No __

6. Do you feel it's important to buy the "right" things?

Yes __ No __

7. Do you feel inferior to your friends financially?

Yes __ No __

8. Does money give you a feeling of power?

Yes __ No __

9. Are you afraid you'll run out of money and be left poor in your old age?

Yes __ No __

10. Do you have a hard time making decisions about spending money, even if it's a small purchase?

Yes __ No __

11. When your spouse says it's time to buy something, are the first words out of your mouth "We can't afford it"?

Yes __ No __

12. If someone asked you, "How much money do you have in your purse or wallet?" would you know exactly?

Yes __ No __

13. Do you use shopping as a reward for yourself?

Yes __ No __

14. If it was a bad day, do you often buy yourself something to feel better?

Yes __ No __

How to Score: Yes answers to questions 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12 indicate you are a saver. A yes answer to questions 4, 5, 6, 7, 13, and 14 show you have strong spending characteristics. In which area did you have the most yes answers?

Saver

1. __

2. __

3. __

8. __

9. __

10. __

11. __

12. __

Total

yes __

Spender

4. __

5. __

6. __

7. __

13. __

14. __

Total

yes __

Now, what does the quiz show? Are you a saver or a spender? I'll bet that you already know which financial personality type your child or children are. Just to make sure, though, take one more short quiz and see:

THE CHILD'S FINANCIAL PERSONALITY TYPE QUIZ

1. If you give your child money, does he or she save it?

Yes __ No __

2. Does your child lose or misplace money often?

Yes __ No __

3. Do you often hear the words "I want, I want" when you go shopping with your youngster?

Yes __ No __

4. If you ask your young one, "Why do you want this?" does he or she often say, "Because Johnny has one" or "I saw it on TV"?

Yes __ No __

5. Is your child reluctant to spend any of his or her own money?

Yes __ No __

6. Does your child get exceptional pleasure in seeing a bank account grow?

Yes __ No __

7. If your child sees a penny on the ground, will he go out of his way to pick it up?

Yes __ No __

8. Does your child decide to save for a special toy, and then later choose not to buy the toy?

Yes __ No __

9. If you say no to the suggestion of stopping for ice cream or pizza, does your child ask, "Can we if I pay for it?"

Yes __ No __

10. When you travel, does your youngster want to bring presents back to all her friends?

Yes __ No __

How to Score: Yes answers to questions 1, 5, 6, 7, and 8 indicate you have a saver on your hands. A yes answer to questions 2, 3, 4, 9, and 10 show you have a full-fledged spender in the family. Which of the two personality types is your child?

Saver

1. __

5. __

6. __

7. __

8. __

Total

yes __

Spender

2. __

3. __

4. __

9. __

10. __

Total

yes __

Okay. Now you know which way your child leans when it comes to money, and what kind of an influence you will be on him. Stay calm. Even if one of you scored very high in one category or the other, indicating either a Silas Mamer pinchpenny or a free-for-all spender, there are adjustments that can greatly temper these predispositions toward the extreme.

The ideal financial personality, of course, is fight in the middle: a careful spender and a disciplined saver. This is what we will be working on in this book.

The way we will do this is not by using whips and chains to change the youngster's behavior (at least not right away). Instead, I will show you how to help your offspring set specific short-range and long-range goals for their money. The excitement of pursuing these goals and then the satisfaction of attaining them will begin to instill in your child the true joy of money.

Copyright © 1994 by Children's Financial Network Inc.

Read More Show Less

First Chapter

Chapter 1

What Kind of (Financial) Personality Do You and Your Children Have?

All through history and saturating our literature are references to the greed and generosity of human beings. The name Scrooge has become synonymous with "tightwad"; Carnegie has come to represent cultural generosity. Who knows or remembers what Mr. Rockefeller did except give lots and lots of money to charity. Archie Bunker, on the other hand, was known to shut the blinds and turn out all the lights on Halloween to avoid giving out free candy to children.

The truth is that money affects us. No matter how much we have or don't have, it affects our mood, our marriage, our goals, our dreams, and our personalities.

In America, our great land of opportunity, the 1980s proved to be the decade of the spender. The indication thus far is that the 1990s will be governed by the savers. (We'll see who's left standing at the turn of the century, won't we?)

You are one of these, and the saving or spending part of your personality influences your child. Do you know if you are a spender or a saver? The following is a fourteen-question quiz to determine which financial personality type you are:

THE ADULT FINANCIAL PERSONALITY TYPE QUIZ

1. Do you find yourself thinking about money often?
Yes __ No __
2. Do you love watching your bank account grow?
Yes __ No __

3. If you inherited a great deal of money today, would you save the bulk of it?
Yes __ No __
4. Do you use your credit cards to the limit?
Yes __ No __
5. Are you perpetually in debt at the end of each month?
Yes __ No __
6. Do you feel it's important to buy the "right" things?
Yes __ No__
7. Do you feel inferior to your friends financially?
Yes __ No __
8. Does money give you a feeling of power?
Yes __ No __
9. Are you afraid you'll run out of money and be left poor in your old age?
Yes __ No __
10. Do you have a hard time making decisions about spending money, even if it's a small purchase?
Yes __ No __
11. When your spouse says it's time to buy something, are the first words out of your mouth "We can't afford it"?
Yes __ No __
12. If someone asked you, "How much money do you have in your purse or wallet?" would you know exactly?
Yes __ No __
13. Do you use shopping as a reward for yourself?
Yes __ No __
14. If it was a bad day, do you often buy yourself something to feel better?
Yes __ No __

How to Score: Yes answers to questions 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12 indicate you are a saver. A yes answer to questions 4, 5, 6, 7, 13, and 14 show you have strong spending characteristics. In which area did you have the most yes answers?

Saver

1. __
2. __
3. __
8. __
9. __
10. __
11. __
12. __
Total
yes __

Spender

4. __
5. __
6. __
7. __
13. __
14. __
Total
yes __

Now, what does the quiz show? Are you a saver or a spender? I'll bet that you already know which financial personality type your child or children are. Just to make sure, though, take one more short quiz and see:

THE CHILD'S FINANCIAL PERSONALITY TYPE QUIZ

1. If you give your child money, does he or she save it?
Yes __ No __
2. Does your child lose or misplace money often?
Yes __ No __
3. Do you often hear the words "I want, I want" when you go shopping with your youngster?
Yes __ No __
4. If you ask your young one, "Why do you want this?" does he or she often say, "Because Johnny has one" or "I saw it on TV"?
Yes __ No __
5. Is your child reluctant to spend any of his or her own money?
Yes __ No __
6. Does your child get exceptional pleasure in seeing a bank account grow?
Yes __ No __
7. If your child sees a penny on the ground, will he go out of his way to pick it up?
Yes __ No __
8. Does your child decide to save for a special toy, and then later choose not to buy the toy?
Yes __ No __
9. If you say no to the suggestion of stopping for ice cream or pizza, does your child ask, "Can we if I pay for it?"
Yes __ No __
10. When you travel, does your youngster want to bring presents back to all her friends?
Yes __ No __

How to Score: Yes answers to questions 1, 5, 6, 7, and 8 indicate you have a saver on your hands. A yes answer to questions 2, 3, 4, 9, and 10 show you have a full-fledged spender in the family. Which of the two personality types is your child?

Saver

1. __
5. __
6. __
7. __
8. __
Total
yes __

Spender

2. __
3. __
4. __
9. __
10. __
Total
yes __

Okay. Now you know which way your child leans when it comes to money, and what kind of an influence you will be on him. Stay calm. Even if one of you scored very high in one category or the other, indicating either a Silas Mamer pinchpenny or a free-for-all spender, there are adjustments that can greatly temper these predispositions toward the extreme.

The ideal financial personality, of course, is fight in the middle: a careful spender and a disciplined saver. This is what we will be working on in this book.

The way we will do this is not by using whips and chains to change the youngster's behavior (at least not right away). Instead, I will show you how to help your offspring set specific short-range and long-range goals for their money. The excitement of pursuing these goals and then the satisfaction of attaining them will begin to instill in your child the true joy of money.

Copyright © 1994 by Children's Financial Network Inc.

Read More Show Less

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