Over the past year, we’ve all learned that financial investments are never guaranteed. In fact, if we want a huge return, we have to take huge risk. This is the name of the game in the financial world. Of course, these rules do not apply with investments into our children.

In contrast to financial investments, we parents have the opportunity and privilege to make a no risk investment in our children and get a guaranteed overwhelming return. We may not always see the benefits immediately, but they are constantly accumulating. The more we invest in our children, the more return we, and ultimately they, will receive in the end.

Take bedtime reading, for example. This investment takes five to ten minutes per night and will guarantee that your child will have a higher interest in books as he grows up. You can start reading to your child as early as the day he’s born. When I started reading to my son, he was only a couple of months old. He loved to hear my voice and at the same time, unconsciously learned that books were great. Now, he picks up just about every book he sees and reads it. He reads all the time, every day.

Another example of a guaranteed return is with volunteering at your child’s school. For those parents who are blessed enough to be at home during school hours, one hour per week in your child’s classroom is guaranteed to do wonders. It’s been proven that children who have parents involved in their academics from a young age have more security, encouragement and confidence in school learning and relationships. By volunteering in my daughter’s classroom every week, I not only get the privilege of knowing what is going on in class, she enjoys it immensely. My second grader is proud to show her work to me every time I walk into her room. She feels special knowing that all the students know her nice mommy, Mrs. Bielicki. She gets the added benefit that mommy ALWAYS checks to see how she’s doing on her homework and passing her spelling tests. This makes instant rewards possible as I smile and hug her saying, “I’m really proud of you, Sweetie!” The look on her face is return enough, but the benefits of investing in her school days is guaranteed to return benefits beyond my imagination.

One of my favorite examples is showing the children how I invest in others, outside our core family. On a regular basis, they see me taking Grammy to a doctor visit or helping her with her bills or whatever she needs around the house. Not only do these times prove to be a great opportunity to spend time with Grammy, they see what a blessing it is to Mommy to offer her help. Showing my children examples of love and compassion is an investment that will not only mold who they are today, but ultimately they will be more inclined to help others as they grow up. This is one investment I am hoping will come back around when I’m old and need help with driving or doing my bills.

There is no investment more rewarding than what we put into our children. Whether it’s time, affection, assistance with homework, reading at night, or just the good old fashion family time at the dinner table, it’s all worth every minute. The dividends are consistent and sure, whether we see them or not. THAT is guaranteed!