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You’ve been working hard on saving for your emergency fund. So, why not spread your knowledge by teaching your children too?

Some examples of small and not-so-small emergencies for children are:

  • The pair of new sneakers left in the locker room after PE, now gone forever
  • The shattered car window from an overeager, but poorly aimed, baseball
  • The huge data plan overage charge
  • The misplaced spending money for an afternoon at the mall

Even though these emergencies may seem small and far from the average adult emergency, to your kids it’s a different story.

Some tips to get started

  1. Help your child add an extra jar to their existing set and mark it for emergencies.
  2. Allocate a portion of your kid’s weekly allowance or chore payment to the emergency fund.
  3. With your child, create a goal for the new jar. For a younger child, $25 should be enough, with the number steadily growing to about $100 for preteens.
  4. Once the jar has hit its target, revert back to the original division of money among the other jars.

The next time your child has a financial emergency, try having them pay for part of it. They will learn responsibility by contributing some of the funds on their own. Its baby steps like these that will prevent your child from having to crawl their way out of debt later on in life.