We have always talked about choices since a young age. I am more of a FI vs FIRE person, we are good with our money but spend where we want.
Since our kids with under 3 we talked about choices and buying things. When we went to a store it was for a purpose. If the kids wanted something, we would explain thats not what we want to spend our money on. We we tell them how we might use that money instead and it would give us more enjoyment or value instead.
One example that really hit home to my oldest was when she was about four she was given a toysrus gift card. She wanted a ticket y that wasn't on sale. It was her choice, but instead of telling her no, we said that it wasn't on sale, but I was pretty it would go on sale (didn't know when). She could buy it now, and use up her whole gift card, or wait until it went on sale, and she would be able to buy more later on. She choose the waiting. It went on sale about a month later, she bought it, was happy with, and then had more on her gift card for another day. It ave really the nderstandingderstanding that if she saved a little she would have some financial freedom to buy things later on.
We have always tried to explain in terms of choices they make today impact what they can do later. we also talk about the choices they make especially the learning ones. We went to disney and gave each child some money. That was to buy whatever they want, but once it was gone, it was gone. It was about twenty or thirty dollars.
one really wanted a five dollar cookie. I didnt want to get it, we tried walking around, checking the other places, but in the end she wanted her pink mine decorated cookie for five bucks. I let her use her money, she got it, took a bite of the ears. Then said wasn't the best cookie she had, it wasn't the worst. I used the opportunity to ask her if it was worth five dollars when a while bock is only two. She said no, and she also concluded that just because something is packaged nicely, it doesn't make it good. That lesson was worth the $5.
I say keep giv e smaller opportunities to let kids think about their purchased and walk them through the logic you have. Most kids don't have that logic yet, and it takes time to teach them.