By: Chuck Kuster
Smart mother uses a snack budget as a teaching tool.
My spouse and I spent a couple days in Disney World earlier in the year. Disney has mastered the art of merchandising, which makes it a great place to watch how parents handle pressures to buy stuff.
One afternoon, I paid special attention to how parents handled meals and snacks. A few families brought along their own. But most clans went through the ordeal of standing in long lines, negotiating each item and finally “bumping” the new Disney Magic
Bands for digital payment. For some, the result was tears, pouting and delays. It was NOT a Magical experience for most.
One exception was a family of five that sat next to me.
Two of the children were enjoying some sort of fruit slushy. But the youngest – I guess he was about 5 – happily sipped from a water bottle. It seemed a bit unfair that the youngest only got water but there were no complaints. Then, I heard the mother tell each child how much money was left in their daily snack budgets.
What a smart mother! Each child got a daily budget and could make his/her purchasing decision. It made me wonder if parents could get Disney to program daily spending limits into each child’s MagicBand.
It probably took some training for the kids to understand Mom’s system. But what a great way to teach youngsters about making choices and managing budgets.
Give children a budget to spend at parks, football games or other events. It’s a great way for them to learn how to manage money and set spending priorities.