Voluncations, Brat Repellant, Allowance Confessions: Weekly Family Finance Picks (#38)

We’re constantly scouring the Internet looking for articles related to family finances and teaching kids good personal finance habits. You can visit the FamZoo delicious page to see our ever growing list of family finance bookmarks. We’re up to 1130 now! Each week, we pick our favorite articles from the previous week and post them here.

The picks for this week are:

Money-Smart Kids / Try a “Purpose Vacation” to Teach Altruism

by Tom Henske on Westport News
Take Your Kids on a Voluncation

Over the past decade, I’ve developed a deep passion for introducing kids to philanthropy. (Did you know that’s the not-so-hidden “ulterior motive” behind FamZoo?) The problem is, if you want to engage your kids in a really significant experience, it can be very hard to carve out the time amongst all the other job and family responsibilities.

Last week, I stumbled upon Tom’s article which offers a very clever solution: take your kids on a “voluncation”. (I thought I cleverly made that up, but Google proved otherwise!) Combine your family vacation with volunteer work. Tom cites a program in Granada as an example.

I like the balanced approach — not too hard core with plenty of real vacation mixed in. Anyone gone on one of these? I’d love to hear from you.

Read the article to find out more.

How NOT to Raise Spoiled Brats

“A bank that’s all about values, not money.” That’s how I like to characterize FamZoo. Money and values are so intricately intertwined. That’s why I really enjoyed Dr. Jim Taylor’s very thoughtful essay on raising respectful, responsible, caring, compassionate kids in “moneyed families”. I’d say the advice holds across all socioeconomic levels. It’s all about values.

Read Dr. Jim’s commentary here.

Allowances: Teaching Teens How to Manage Their Money

I love reading about the allowance experiences of real parents — as opposed to the so-called experts — some of whom don’t even have kids! Not naming names or anything...

Here’s a great example from Robin Dance with loads of practical tips in both the post and the numerous comments. Enjoy.

Two bonus videos this week.

First up: marshmallows and delayed gratification. If you spend much time reading about kids and money, you’re bound to stumble upon references to the famous marshmallow experiment (like here and here). Well, thanks to a tweet exchange between @DanKadlec and @Awesome_Island, I found an entertaining TED video on the experiment. The clips of the kids agonizing over whether or not to eat the marshmallow are priceless.

I thought this local news segment was a nice summary of the allowance decision.

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