“Get your lemonade here! Only $50 dollars.”
The exuberant charm of a four-year-old was just too much for the passerbys to resist.
Cannon picked up on the finer points of capitalism pretty quickly. Up to that point, coins and dollars were something you sweet-talked out of Grandpa. The concept of money was lost on him.
So when our neighborhood held its annual community garage sale, it was a perfect opportunity to teach him a very valuable life lesson: If you want something, you have to work for it.
As an only child that is more than a little spoiled, it’s a hard concept to grasp. He thinks that he deserves a toy on every shopping trip. It takes money to buy those toys.
So with a little help from Antsy Pantsy, we set up a lemonade stand.
Antsy Pants is a new line of Build & Play™ Kits that encourage limitless options of imaginative play for children.
These easy-to-build, durable play structures, which are only available at Target, feature color-coded Snap and Click™ poles and connectors, making assembly fun and easy for each kit.
Thanks to the garage sale going on, there was plenty of through traffic. He quickly figured it out that the more lemonade he sold, the more money he would make and the more toys he could buy.
Soon enough, he was waving down cars as they passed by. Even though he was only charging 50 cents for a cup, nearly every customer told him to keep the change. He was a natural salesman. He sold the entire lawn crew working on the house across the street. He sold an entire car full of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
In less than an hour, he sold out of lemonade having made just under $25.
Just as I promised, I took him shopping later on that day. He was able to buy his own toys for the first time. It made him feel good. He was very proud of his toy haul that day.
And now when I explain that we don’t have the money to buy something, he understands a little bit better. Next step, getting him to do chores in exchange for an allowance.
— Semi-Pro Dad (@TheSemiProDad) May 24, 2017
A special thanks to Antsy Pantsy for making it easy. The variety of whimsical fabric covers, such as pirate ships to lemonade stands, are perfect for children who love to dream, build and explore,fostering their larger than life imagination. Kids are given the independence to build each kit all on their own, allowing children to design their own playtime while encouraging movement and creativity.
Here are a few more suggestions for teaching your kids to be fiscally responsible:
- Get a piggy bank and start collecting coins and fill it up. Once they have about $10-$20 accumulated, open a savings account with your child. Make deposits together and be sure to make it a very positive experience. Some banks have a savings account just for kids.
- Buy books that will educate them at their age level. I highly recommend the Rich Dad’s Escape From The Rat Race when they are old enough to read.
- Explain to your children that money is earned by working, and that you can only spend what you earn.
- Give your child an allowance. You might consider paying your children for chores outside of daily duties, such as helping to rake leaves or wash the family car. If they are anything like my kids, they have a goal in mind and will help out to accomplish that goal. This makes doing the chores more fun!
- When your children get older, you can then advance into teaching them about a checking account. Teach them how to balance a checking account so they know how to do it on their own.