Seeing the lights: Taking advantage of teachable holiday moments
Our family participated in the interactive Helpful Steps for Parents scavenger hunt at the recent Magnificent Mile Lights Festival. It was made up of several tents along Michigan Avenue devoted to the theme of healthy money habits.
Sharing is caring
When visited the “Share” tent, which was designed to encourage parents to talk to their children about the importance of giving back – whether through volunteering or donating. This was a teachable moment when my eight-year-old son Erick said, “Mommy, I want to give all of the money in my savings account to help the homeless.”
I explained to Erick that he could donate some of his money to the homeless, but he could help in others ways too, such as, having a fundraiser for them, or even donating some of his gently used clothing. As a result of the discussion, we as a family have decided to start a charity scrapbook for the holidays to keep track of our good deeds for others.
The game of life
The objective of the “Board Game” tent was to give kids an opportunity to play a life-sized game that tested them on their financial knowledge. As I watched the kids play, the concept of budgeting came to mind as a teachable moment. I wondered, what if I would have included them in creating a budget for this trip to Chicago?
The grand finale
After a day of teachable moments, the kids and I got the chance to enjoy a ride on the Helpful Steps for Parents float. It looked like a million people were there to watch the parade. As we were dancing and waving to people from the float there was a connection, a transference of sentiment that I felt in my heart and saw in my children’s eyes. To look into the faces of the people with a smile and receive a welcoming wave in return was a sincere interaction with the community. For my co-workers and my children, this is a memory that I will be forever thankful.
Tell me about your teachable holiday moments. When do you like to talk to your kids about money?