So, I’m having this dilemma, and I wondered what you guys do…you know, when it comes to the topic of an allowance for your kids.
I firmly believe that our family is a team…I regularly make team references to the kids. How we have to work together. How everyone has a part to play. How everyone is expected, in their own way and to their abilities, to help. Mama and Daddy aren’t the only ones living here…y’all gotta help out too.
The two bigs have chore charts, and yes, they must do their chores. Every. Day.
It’s not something special. You don’t get kudos for doing what you’re supposed to do. You just do it because it needs done and it’s your job. The end.
I don’t want my kids to expect rewards for Life.
I want them to learn that you do things simply because they are necessary. Oh, and do them with a happy heart because you must also do it for the Glory of God. Yes, even feeding the dogs.
I have this verse pinned up in my kitchen (as much for me as it is for anyone else):
(you can download and print your own HERE.)
SO…why am I talking about allowance?
Henry needs a lesson in Saving/Giving/Spending.
A few reasons:
1) Out of the blue, Henry has been asking to go to the toy store. We have a change jar in the kitchenand he’s been playing with it. Andy told him he could have all of the pennies. So now, apparently, those rogue pennies are burning a hole in my son’s pocket and he seems to think it’s off to the toy store. SO weird. Why is that weird? Because this is the same kid who begs to go home when we are at Toys R Us, the same kid who often passes on getting a toy from the dollar bin at Target because “I don’t need any toys mom, I have enough. Can I get a yogurt instead?”, and the same kid who regularly tells me to “give this toy to the other kids who don’t have toys…I don’t play with it anymore and they should have it.” So, it really surprises me that he wants to go shopping. This is new territory for me.
2) When we went shopping yesterday for the #instafooddrive, I explained that God wants us to share what He’s given us, and part of that is our money…so we were going to go buy cans for others who needed food. Imagine my shock/horror/sadness when Henry said “Okay mom. But let’s use your money. Not mine. I want to buy a toy.” I wanted to cry. What?! Who are you? Why would you say that???!!! This is clearly something that is near and dear to my heart and one of my Big Things as a parent. Dude needs a lesson in giving…of his OWN things. Honestly, I’m appalled and sick to my stomach when I think of it. Blech. Above all, I want my children to have loving, giving, beautiful hearts. And his little speech in the car was NONE of that.
3) He starts Kindergarten next year…it’s good for math skills. Totally unimportant compared to the bigness of numbers 1 and 2, but it doesn’t hurt.
So, here’s my question: How do you handle the topic of allowance?
I am still very much a believer in doing your chores simply because it’s your JOB, not for reward. I do not want to pay my kids to be a part of this family. Period. But I do feel like it’s time for some instruction in the world of money…perhaps paying him (you know, like a nickel) for doing extra stuff? But what? What types of things can I give a 4.5 year old to do?