|Pathways Advisory Group. Inc.|
Michelle Carter, CFP®
If you're a parent, you may have mixed feelings about summer vacation.
Each year, as the weather becomes hotter and the days become longer, I begin to think about my goals for those 10 weeks. It's a break from traditional school work, but since children are always learning, what do I want to teach them this summer?
This year, I want them to learn the feeling of accomplishment from earning their own money. My kids are ages 4-7 and don't receive an allowance. They are expected to help around the house, mostly in their own rooms, with some regular chores added in (clear the table, feed the cat, etc). I wanted to take it up a notch, and summer seemed like a great time to do this.
I am creating a "Work for Hire" board. You can find multiple examples of this online. Here is one:
The basic premise is to post a chore to be done and attach the payment. With younger kids, you can use pictures (a dusting rag or a broom) and pay with quarters. With older kids, you can use tougher chores for higher pay. It's a flexible way to teach children hard work and money management.
At the end of the week (or month) you can take them to spend some of their hard earned money, or you can save all summer for a bigger reward just before school starts. I have even seen it done with Monopoly money, complete with a "mom store" for spending hard earned "money" on small treasures.
We are going to give this a try this summer in the Carter household. I'm sure we will learn what works best for us as we go. It will be a fun experiment, and I look forward to reporting back this fall on how it went!
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