I am a firm believer in teaching kids how to handle money from a young age. Figuring out how to do allowance with my kids was something that I worked on for years until I found something that worked well for all of us. Through my process of learning what worked, I tried two strategies. The first was to give the kids a set amount every week along with a list of expectations. They ended up expecting the money, but did not keep up with their end of the bargain.
My second strategy was to pay them for each of their chores each time they did them. This backfired on me. They wanted to be paid for everything I asked them to do. If something was needing to be done, they wanted a dollar amount attached to it for them to follow through. Bad plan, so I found another strategy to try.
My final strategy is the one that we use now and works like a charm. It follows the second strategy I tried with a bit of a twist. I have a list of chores for each of my children to accomplish along with set amounts for each time they accomplish the task. I have this list printed out in a way that they can write in when they accomplished a task and how much they earned.
Sounds familiar - right? There is a twist to this new allowance sheet. My kids have to take the initiative to be paid for their chores. The minute mom or dad assigns them to do a chore, they lose the benefit of being paid for it. However, they are still expected to follow through with it. I feel a bit excited when I announce family chore time because while the kids may moan about helping out, they made the choice to wait to do their chores for free.
It is an easy concept, but one that works well. Tomorrow I hope to expand on my allowance concept. It includes learning the art of biting your tongue and allowing mistakes to be made. See you then!