As a parent, it is your responsibility to get your kids ready for whatever life throws their way so they can thrive in adulthood. For instance, adults face the tax season regularly throughout their lives, so it’s something parents should consider teaching their children.
In this article, you will get quick age-appropriate tax lessons you can use to discuss the concept with your children during critical points of their life.
Grade School Age
1. What Taxes Are
Bring your child to your next grocery trip for a bit of a tax lesson. Try grabbing a flat dollar-priced piece and show your child how some cents are added during check out. Let your child know that the extra cents are what we call taxes.
You can also let your child know that taxes are money that goes to the government. After you establish that, you can go with the next lesson.
2. Why People Need to Pay Taxes
Children are very curious at this age, and their favorite question is “Why?” So, after introducing taxes, show them public infrastructures that are brought to life because of taxes. For instance, point out bridges, schools, playgrounds, parks, hospitals, and similar properties.
Let them know that adults pay these taxes, so they should do the same thing when they grow older.
Junior High School Age
1. Different Types of Taxes
At this stage, children are more familiar with the world they live in. So, it’s time to venture out of sales taxes and start talking about the concepts of Social Security, property taxes, and income taxes. You can discuss where you give them an overview of each tax’s purpose and what tax payments would look like.
2. What Paychecks Look Like and What Pay Deductions Are
Make income tax much easier to understand by showing your child your paycheck. You can explain that though you have a salary, you won’t receive the total amount because of the taxes.
Here, you can explain that you pay for Medicare, Social Security, federal tax, state tax, and local taxes—and what these deductions are for. Consequently, you should also let them know why it is essential to budget what’s left from every paycheck.
High School Age and Older: How to File Taxes
Once high school comes, your child must be familiar with taxes as they might be inclined to take on part-time jobs. Here’s the crucial part: teaching your child how to file for taxes. Help them by teaching them the value of organization—storing receipts, filling out W-2 forms, and preparing other necessary documents.
Taxes can be an intimidating concept, even for adults. To help your kids be familiar with it and be ready to do it once the time comes, it’s essential to teach them about healthy financial habits. By instilling in them important concepts like this, you can help them work towards a brighter future.
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