Money that kids receive as gifts can provide a valuable teaching opportunity.
"You don't have to spend it all in one place," says Eleanor Blayney, consumer advocate for the CFP Board in Washington. "You can spend some, save, invest, give."
Some parents convey that message by labeling containers for children to divide their money among savings, spending, investing and charity. As part of the lesson, Blayney insisted that half of what Elizabeth later made from part-time jobs had to go into savings.