Hardship Recovery

Use The Penny Challenge To Teach Your Kids How To Save

The faster your kids start to learn about money and saving, the better off they’ll be. Here’s a simple challenge that can get their financial future started on the right foot.


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If you have problems saving money, you know how they can come back to bite you when it’s time to pay bills. Or, even worse, you know how a lack of saved money in an emergency fund can lead to loads of unwanted debt.

While you may not have had the fortune of learning to save at an early age, that doesn’t mean you can’t give your children that gift.

Of course, if you can barely make ends meet, starting a “savings challenge” with your kids may seem like a dream. With the Penny Challenge, however, it can become your reality.

What is the Penny Challenge?

Just like its name suggests, the Penny Challenge has you save pennies. Why do it? So you can start to stack savings and end up with a pleasant little surprise once the next 365 days are over.

Can you just save one penny per day and complete the challenge? You could, but you wouldn’t finish it as intended. And you also wouldn’t end up with much since $3.65 saved won’t get you far.

How much should you have stashed away to start the Penny Challenge? One penny, and to continue it, you’ll have to add one penny to that amount each day for an entire year.

If this seems confusing, it isn’t. One day one, put one penny into a piggy bank or some other savings receptacle. On day two, add two pennies to that amount. On day three, add three pennies, and keep going for 365 days.


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As you can probably tell, your biggest piggy bank contribution will be on day 365, totaling a whopping $3.65. That’s not too bad in terms of being the most significant deposit, but you’re probably wondering, how much can you end up with?

Do the Penny Challenge for a full year, and you and your kids can have $667.95 saved. Do the math yourself, and you’ll come up with that figure as you add $0.01 plus $0.02 and so on for 365 days.

Doing the Penny Challenge With Your Children

Will your kids have enough money to do the challenge on their own? Probably not, since on the final week, a total of $28.92 will have to be deposited. This may be too much if they’re very young, but if they’re teens with a job, it’s certainly doable.

Even if it’s with your own money, doing the Penny Challenge daily with children teaches them the importance of saving. And once the challenge is finished, it can show them how putting just a little bit away can lead to big rewards later on.

Planting this financial seed in your kids’ minds can set them up for success. It can give them the nudge they need to start saving at a young age, and the younger they start, the earlier they can retire.

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