Teach your kids how to manage money well. Be open and honest with your kids by disclosing how much your family earns and how much things cost [Editor's note: if your kids are very young or you're uncomfortable with the possibility of your kids sharing personal information with those outside the family, you may want to refrain from sharing the exact details of your income at this time.] 

Help them understand your thought processes when deciding how whether or not to make a purchase. Teach them the importance of prioritization and delayed gratification. Consider giving your kids an allowance or paying them to do extra chores around the house. Help them set up a savings account or (for teens) a checking account.

Adapted from Dollars & Sense: A Mom’s Guide to Money Matters, by Cynthia Sumner, copyright 2005 by MOPS International. Published by Fleming H. Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, Grand Rapids, Mich., www.revellbooks.com.

Cynthia Sumner is the author of three books for moms and a former contributing editor for MOPS International’s MOMSense magazine. She holds a degree in economics and an MBA with a concentration in finance. Currently Cindy directs marketing for Sumner National Bank, serves on the bank’s board of directors, and provides bookkeeping and accounting services for a moderate-size farming operation. She and her husband have three kids and live in rural Illinois.