Teaching your children about money can be a tricky proposition. After all, the concepts are often abstract, and can sometimes be boring. In order to help your children understand money, it can help to make it fun. One way to do that is to play games based on money with them.
Money games can provide your children with “hands on” insight into money, and how it works. While many of these games have an element of chance, even that can help them learn more about how to better manage money. After all, in real life it’s often important to make the best of what we’re given.
Using Games to Educate Your Children
As you strive to teach your children important financial lessons, use games as a way to educate them about money. Here are some great games that aid in financial understanding:
- Pay Day: I like this because it’s set up like a calendar, and it includes events that require payment. This board game helps children see the importance of managing their resources, including saving money. There is also a loan element. This board game is similar to the PBS online game Mad Money. In which kids can practice making better money decisions.
- Monopoly: This is one of the most popular games out there. Children can learn about relative value by making deals, how to negotiate, the dangers of over leveraging, and how to manage money. While I’m not sure that real estate is really the path to riches, there are enough other lessons in this game to help out.
- LIFE: I loved this game a child. One of the best things about this game is that it teaches you the value of making solid decisions early in life. What you get your degree in does matter. You can also learn about how much different degrees cost, and whether it makes sense to leverage it, through student loans, into something that will benefit you later. Insurance, investing, saving, and unexpected expenses are all briefly touched on during this game.
- Awesome Island: This game is aimed more at teenagers. It’s an interesting look at finances, giving, investing, and more. Another family game that is overtly about financial education is Wise Money.
- Settlers of Catan: I also think that Settlers of Catan has a lot to teach about money. You learn about resource management, trading and negotiation, and that you need to spend money to build the things that will help you earn more money. While “money” isn’t used in the game, the lessons still translate as you direct your resources.
There are a number of fun financial literacy resources out there, and your kids can benefit from these fun games that teach lessons as well as provide a great family night activity.
Image source: Fir0002 via Wikimedia Commons