Are you paying your kids to do chores around the house? It’s a common concept, whether you give an allowance, or work some other payment system, it’s not unusual to find families who pay their children to do chores.
Here’s the thing, though: you need to stop. Seriously, STOP Paying Your Kids To Do Chores.
Don’t stop making them do chores; just stop paying them to do it. Stop paying them to do what is expected of them.
Why Stop Paying Your Kids To Do Chores
Let me explain before you make any judgments. These are my Why’s.
First, this isn’t saying you can’t give your children an allowance if you choose to do so. This just means their allowance shouldn’t be tied to specific chores. If you want to give your children x amount per week/month, then feel free to do so. However, if you want them to do chores around the house, this needs to be separate from allowance or a pay structure.
Some families decide they will offer to pay their children for doing extra chores, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with this. Meaning, if your child wants to help with yard cleanup, or do other tasks outside of their normal chores, in exchange for monetary compensation, then that’s great. It teaches responsibility and the value of working for what you want.
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That said, it’s important to have your children do regular, age-appropriate chores around the house and that you don’t pay them for these. These are tasks they need to learn to do on their own. Even very young children can learn to put their toys away, and pick up after themselves. This is part of respecting your space and it’s a skill that everyone should learn.
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Chores should be done because it’s the right thing to do when you are part of a society. Your kids live in the home, they use things and space in the home, and they need to learn to contribute to the home and do their part.
What Does This Teach Our Kids
This teaches your children to be grounded, responsible, and generous. Doing chores teaches children:
- The importance of helping others
- To clean up after themselves
- To respect their space
- The value of hard work
- Awareness of others’ needs
- Confidence in their abilities
It also teaches them valuable life skills they will need as they grow older. It will help them build confidence now, and it will also help them function better and more independently in the world when they are older. When they move out or go away to college, they’ll have the skills needed to do things and they will have the confidence to know they can do it on their own.
When you pay children to do chores, you’re diminishing the lesson to be learned in doing the chore. It also hinders learning and dampens their enjoyment of the actual tasks. You are essentially bribing them to do it. To install a sense of responsibility, you want to raise children who do chores because they know it’s the right thing to do and because they want to take personal responsibility for themselves and also to help out the community in which they reside.
Allowance or payment shouldn’t be an incentive to do what they should be learning to do anyway. No one is going to pay them to pick up their dirty laundry as adults. No one is going to pay them to wash their dishes or sweep their floors. It’s a very important lesson we much teach them as parents, to learn to do chores because they need to be done, not because of the promise of payment or reward.
So, start your children young with tasks they can manage on their own, and adjust the chores as they grow older. Allowance can be a good system to teach money matters and the importance of saving, but this should be done separately from chore responsibilities.
Do you pay your kids for chores? What is your system?