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Why Keeping Money Out Of Your Toddler’s Hands Is About More Than Just Hygiene

MIKI Yoshihito

There are plenty of reasons why you don’t want your toddler handling money, starting with the fact that they’ll probably just put it in their mouth. According to a new study published in Scientific American, here’s another one: it can turn them into a real jerk.

The researchers conducted a series of experiments with 550 kids in Poland and the U.S. between the ages of 3 and 6. In one, they split kids into groups that either sorted money, buttons, or paper; afterwards, researchers asked the kids to help clean up crayons and the money sorters were less helpful than kids in the other groups. In another, researchers added candy (also known as “kid currency”) to the items being sorted. Once finished, researchers allowed the kids to take 6 stickers and gave them the option to give some of their stickers to other kids who didn’t participate. On average, the money grubbers … rather, sorters, gave away half of what the candy and button sorters gave away.

Handling Money Makes Kids More Selfish And Less Generous

Still, the love of money wasn’t associated with only negative outcomes. Another experiment in the study had button sorters and money sorters attempt complete a maze and given the option to quit at any time. Money sorters dominated, with 81 percent of them lasting at least 2 minutes, whereas everyone else lasted half the time. This mirrors existing research, in which adults worked harder and had better problem solving skills, but were also more selfish, as a result of handling (or even thinking about) money.

While those are helpful skills to have at the office, unless you want your kid to start acting like a coworker, maybe wait until their a little older to start playing Monopoly.

[H/T] Scientific American