Giving Kids Allowance: Are You Doing It Wrong?
Giving Kids Allowance
Most of us grew up with the idea that our allowance (if we were lucky enough to get one!) was connected in some way to our chores or other duties that we had to do around the house to help out. Help mow the lawn? Here’s a couple bucks. Didn’t clean your room this week? No allowance for you! It’s easy for us as parents to fall into the same patterns our parents used with us, but experts today are saying that if you’re still using the chores incentive system in giving kids allowance, you’re doing it wrong.
They make a good point, too. If helping take out the trash or cleaning up after a marathon Lego session always comes with a cash reward, why would they ever do these things on their own, without getting paid? We need to teach our kids to help out for the sake of keeping things nice for everyone—otherwise we run the risk of raising entitled kids who feel like they deserve prizes for completing the most basic and necessary of tasks.
But giving kids allowance is still important, because it teaches them the importance of smart money management, and the value of money itself. So, what’s the right way to do it? Experts say you should give kids a small amount every week (and increase it that weekly amount as they get older), giving them money they can set aside for the things they want (read: probably more Lego!). They’ll learn how to budget and save up, and it will save you from having to be the bad guy when you won’t spring for that new Hot Wheels set in the toy aisle. Instead, you can just tell little Noah or Joey that he can save up for it with the money you give him each week. When he finally has enough, he’ll feel prouder and happier with his new toy than he would have if you bought it for him.
How many of you give your kids allowance? Do you follow the old school rules, or do you think the new framework is better? Let me know in the comments!
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