Teaching children about money - aged nine-to-10 years

As children progress through primary school, they’ll start picking up on popular trends and advertising designed to affect spending.

Children aged nine to ten

Helping children aged nine to 10 understand how money works

Here are three National Curriculum topics for nine-to-10-year-olds, along with practical tips on what you can do to help them build their understanding. Information correct as of February 2023.

1. Value for money

Understanding value for money and being able to seek deals is an important life skill. By this age children will be understanding that:

  • Similar things can cost different amounts.
  • Comparing prices can help get the best value for money.
  • Understand the difference between goods and services, and how we might select one over another.
  • Prioritise needs and wants when making spending decisions.

Being open with them about some of your purchases could help with this, like researching big ticket items before buying. 


Learning together: Make the most of their money

If children are asking for something, like a game, toy or trainers, talk about the value for money. Weighing up these choices will help them to manage their money. 

  • Could they get the same game for less, by buying it second hand?  
  • If they select a different brand of trainers, would there be money left over for something else?  
  • Is the quality different, or would they be paying more just for the brand? Is it worth it?  

2. Influences on saving and spending

By this age, children can understand that advertising is used to persuade people to spend. They can:

  • Recognise the different factors that can influence our decisions about money.
  • See brands use adverts to make their products seem more attractive. 
  • Think about how to make the most of their own money. 


Learning together: Analyse the ads 

If you are watching a video or programme with adverts, talk about what they are trying to do. How do pizza and burger adverts make them feel hungry? Why do car adverts show empty roads rather than traffic jams?  

If children ask for something they have seen, talk about whether it’s likely to be as exciting as shown on screen. Read some reviews together online. This way, you can help children to understand that they are designed to persuade people to buy stuff.

3. Interest on saving and borrowing

Interest can be both a reward for saving and also the cost of borrowing.

By introducing children to the idea of interest, you can help motivate them to save, and help them avoid expensive debts in future.


Learning together: Interest on interest

Compound interest is the interest paid on interest and according to Einstein, it is the eighth wonder of the world.

Plug some numbers into a compound interest calculator online, to show how interest payments mount up over time. Say they put £100 into a bank account paying 5% interest. At the end of the first year, they would earn £5 interest on their £100, taking the total balance to £105. 

If they leave the money in the account, at the end of the second year, they can see that they won’t just earn another £5 interest. They’ll also earn interest on the £5 added last time – an extra 25p.

Grasping compound interest may mean that children are more likely to end up earning it, from saving or investing, rather than paying it on debts.

Related information

Three-to-six years old

It’s never too early to start teaching children about money. As children start school, they will be picking up financial habits from their parents.

3 to 6 years

Seven-to-eight years old

At this age, children want to make more of their own decisions about saving and spending.

7 to 8 years

11-to-13 years old

Starting secondary school is a big step. Children will be getting more interested in money and making decisions that could affect their future choices.

11 to 13 years

14-to-16 years old

Teenagers are often keen to become more independent and learn to manage their own money.

14 to 16 years

Further support

Money management

Our tips and tools can help you manage your bills and credit, while helping you save and feel better about your finances. 

Money worries

If you are struggling with your finances, or are worried about the increased cost of living, you are not alone. We are here to help you get back on track.