If you want your children to become financially responsible adults, it's important that you teach them the value of money at a young age. Giving them pocket money, resisting pester power and giving them practical experience of budgeting will all set children in good stead for their adult lives. This will be especially important to you if you weren't taught financial responsibility yourself as a child, and you want to help your offspring to avoid the costly mistakes you have made.
Giving a child pocket money each week means they learn that they can't have everything right now. If they want to buy a toy, they will be acutely aware of how much it costs if they have to put money aside for it each week. If your child has had to budget for his holiday spending money, he will appreciate the cost of things much more. He might even be reluctant to hand over his hard earned cash when it comes to things you might have been persuaded to buy, like cheap trinkets that quickly lose their appeal.
Giving into pester power might resolve the headache you have right now, but it won't help your children in the long run. When you're in the supermarket, and your daughter wants a toy or packet of sweets, say 'no' and stick to your budget. If your son is desperate for an ice cream while you're at the park, you might think it's harmless to indulge. If you make him wait until he has proved to you that he can behave and do as he is told, that treat will be even more valuable, and he will appreciate it much more than if you just handed it over.
If you're shopping for a small number of items, you can use the trip as an opportunity to teach budgeting. Give your child a set amount of money, and challenge her to find the items you need within budget. She will become aware of how much things cost, so will better understand why you can't afford to indulge those cheeky little requests. If your child has to add up the cost of a few items, and go to the till to pay, he'll appreciate your reasons for buying cheaper or non branded products.
If you give your child practical experience of budgeting, and set a good example with your own spending, they'll have a much greater understanding of the value of money. Be organised and get creative, your child will thank you for it!