Boys make money, and girls spend it. This seems to be the message most kids get from both adults and their peers. According to a national survey of high school students, boys were twice as likely as girls to say they were knowledgeable about money-related issues. Boys also expressed more confidence about managing money than girls did.
So why do guys feel more financially savvy than girls? According to Money Magazine, it's because society teaches girls that their job is to spend money, not earn it. Toy companies create games for girls that are geared towards spending money, not making it such as Mall Madness, where the girl who makes the most purchases wins. Boys, on the other hand, are taught to barter their baseball cards in order to make money. You don't see girls making deals on their belongings.
So how can parents teach both boys and girls to be smart with money? Try one of these suggestions from Money Magazine.
- First, offer boys and girls the same lessons about money. If you take your son to the bank to teach him about a savings account, take your daughter too. This way, both of them can learn the idea behind saving and spending money.
- Next, provide equal opportunities. Studies show that most parents give boys a certain amount of spending money each week, while they give girls cash whenever they ask for it. This sends the message that girls cannot handle having a budget. Give both your sons and daughters a set allowance each week. This way, they both learn how to handle a budget.
- And the final way parents can teach both boys and girls about money: be a good role model. When kids see that mom always goes to the grocery store and dad always pays the bills, they assume this is what they'll be doing when they grow up. So make sure your kids see that both parents make financial decisions. And most importantly, remind your kids that they can do whatever they want to do, no matter what gender they are.