The piggy bank is full!

The piggy bank is full!

Siblings Varun and Nitya have several interests between them - from reading to playing football. When they begin receiving pocket money from their parents, the children understand how saving is as important as spending wisely. And they are rewarded for their smart financial management.

Varun (10) and Nitya (8) live in Kalina, Mumbai’s leafy suburb. Varun loves reading and riding his bicycle with his friends in the compound of his apartment building. Nitya spends hours with her building sets but recently also started playing with the football that her friends bring home on some evenings. Varun had been asking his parents for pocket money for several weeks after he turned nine. After giving this a good thought, their parents agreed to give them both some pocket money every week. The amount came to Rs. 500 a month for each of them – the children were overjoyed when they started receiving this!

Both Varun and Nitya were asked to plan how they would spend this money and discuss it with their parents each month. Their parents explained how this exercise was called ‘budgeting’ for their expenses. Their parents usually agreed with the children’s plans to buy sweets, new types of pencils, small toys and so on.

However, they also insisted that the children put aside some of the pocket money each month into a shiny blue money box, or ‘piggy bank’ as Nitya called it. These would be their ‘savings’ which they could use to buy something really good at the end of the year. So, over the last one year, both Varun and Nitya had been diligently saving a portion of their pocket money.

Each month they would look inside the money box and excitedly think of what they could buy for themselves things they had been longing for. Their parents had promised to contribute an amount equal to what the children had saved in order to buy these items. One beautiful day in December, just before the end of the year, Nitya came running excitedly to the kitchen where her parents were preparing breakfast. Can you guess what she was excited about? Here is a little poem about what the parents,Varun and Nitya discussed…

Shiny little coins

And crisp new notes.

“The piggy bank is full!”

Our little girl gloats.

“I can buy a football

Or a set of blocks.

And a lovely new game

Or a bunch of new frocks!”

“I want to buy that race track”

Says our young man

“And that new book

Do you think I can?”

“Of course, my dear

You can,” we say.

“But save a little

For grandma’s birthday.

Buy her a rose

Or a little sweet treat.

Maybe some chocolates

That she loves to eat.

And don’t you forget

That bike you liked best.

Save a little for that

And we will chip in the rest.

A few coins to spare

For that boy on our street

Who scrounges for food

Or has nothing to eat.”

“Oh dear!” they said.

“There’s only a little left,

We can buy only one game.

What about the rest?”

“Share it with each other.

Together, you can play.

Don’t fret, my dears

For your kindness will pay.”

On New Year’s day when Varun and Nitya woke up, a wonderful surprise was waiting for them in the living room. Nitya saw a lovely red package with her name on it – she tore open the paper covering it to ?nd a football she had been longing for. As she was jumping with joy, Varun came running to her and showed her the book that he had been wanting to read. Their parents wished them a “Happy New Year” and hugged them tight. Finally, their kindness and their good spending habits had brought them their reward!


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