This holiday, I thought my oldest son, now 6, needed more help understanding that Christmas is about giving. With so many aunts, uncles, great-aunts, great-uncles, and grandparents, there sure is a lot of getting going on! Getting is easy to enjoy… but so is giving. Giving time, giving thought, and giving donations are all ways that we can help support our communities. I love this article from Yahoo sharing 6 simple ways to give back. A great place to get started when thinking about others.
I came up with a plan for him to help earn some Christmas money that would be spent on holiday gifts. He enjoyed helping, and he loved shopping. It was hard for him to pick gifts for others when there were so many cool things HE wanted. And it was hard for him to spend money he had worked for on others. But he did enjoy finding the right thing for each person, and getting some special shopping time with me.
As he gets older, I want to keep this lesson of giving, as well as an overall responsibility with money. These are great lessons to learn young.
To help teach these concepts all year long, I grabbed three mason jars, some construction paper, scissors, and pens. I made three mason jars – one for money to save, one for money to spend, and one for money to give. I know some people use a similar system, and have certain percentages of their money that should go into each. I don’t want this system to be that rigid. I’d rather my son decide where he’d like his money to go. And because the jars are glass, he can see how much money is in each.
I traced the lids onto the construction paper.
Cut them out, then cut a slit in each. Make sure the hole is big enough that a folded dollar can fit in.
Each lid gets a word – spend, save, give. You can choose different words if you like.
Remove the metal plate portion of each lid, replace with the paper, and screw the lid back in place.
Repeat for all the lids, your jars are done!
If you’re looking for more ideas for giving, check out the Yahoo article on 6 simple ways to give back.