Many parents give their children an allowance for completing chores throughout the week. But is this a positive form of motivation? Or is it damaging to the child’s mindset in the long-run?
Unfortunately, the answer isn’t clear-cut.
Some people swear by giving children an allowance to complete their chores. Others think it’s just a form of negative bribery that teaches children not to do something unless they get paid. Let’s go through the arguments on both sides.
The Pros of Paying Children for Chores
- Encourages money management – Being able to manage an income of any size is a vital life skill. Children today often want an endless list of new clothes, toys, gadgets and games. With their own money, children are more likely to buy what they actually need instead of asking their parents for every passing whim.With their own money, children are more likely to buy what they actually need instead of asking… Click To Tweet
- Creates a link between earning money and work –Some parents find an allowance leads to the child taking greater care with chores, as he or she doesn’t want to lose their allowance due to shoddy work.
- Teaches an entrepreneurial mindset – When children learn they can get paid for completing tasks, they are potentially more likely to see future money-making opportunities.
- The chores are still done! – Some parents take the attitude that as long as the chores are complete, they don’t mind whether a “bribe” was required.
The Cons of Paying Children for Chores
- Children start to believe they should get paid for any chore – Once parents pay for some chores, it’s natural for a child to think they should be paid for everything. It’s not pleasant when the typical response to “can you vacuum the house for me please?” is “sure, I’ll do it for $3!”
- Paying doesn’t encourage a community mindset – One of the benefits of chores is teaching children that people in a family or community need to work together. If the child is getting paid, this lesson is unlikely to sink in.
- Doesn’t teach children independent living – Everyone needs to do chores when they grow up, and adults can’t expect to be paid for the vacuuming. Some parents argue that bribing children will make them resent doing chores for free when they are older. bribing children will make them resent doing chores for free when they are older Click To Tweet
- Children can still have an allowance – Parents can still teach money management via an allowance without linking it to chores. It could be based on good behavior or other criteria, rather than washing the dishes or vacuuming the floor.
As you can tell, the argument over whether to pay children for chores is here to stay. There has been a recent shift away from chore-based allowances, but it’s still a popular method for motivating children to help around the house.
Of course, there are also practical problems. How do you decide what to pay for chores such as emptying the dishwasher? What happens if the floor isn’t spotless after your child vacuums? These might seem like minor questions, but can potentially cause stress and arguments when your child doesn’t agree with your decision.
Ultimately, while there are strong arguments on both sides, it’s up to you – the parent – to decide what’s best for your child. it’s up to you – the parent – to decide what’s best for your child Click To Tweet If you feel they need to learn the importance of working for money, then paying an allowance might be a good choice. But if you want to teach responsibility and collaboration, other forms of motivation are probably better.
Do you pay your children for chores? Or, do you think it’s best to provide other forms of motivation? Let me know in the comments!
James is a cleaning expert and head writer at SpotlessVacuum.co.uk. He’s also a parent of two, and in his spare time enjoys cycling and hiking.