top of page

Doesn't allowance tied to chores teach kids the value of work?

Then just recently I started an allowance. He needs to help out in order to earn his money. He doesn't get money weekly at all, just when I feel he has really earned it!


There are pitfalls of tying allowance to performance.


It sounds like good training for the business world. But unlike a real job where someone has choices about what type of work to do and the atmosphere they like to work in, the work available at home is limited to what the parent is willing to pay for. That's fine and resembles the working world if the child wants to earn extra money. But as a sole source of income it doesn't resemble real life at all.


I know that might be harsh, but really he doesn't need the money, its more of an incentive. He keeps it all and has NEVER used it!


I think that last bit sounds like seeking to justify a decision that feels uncomfortable.



If allowance isn't tied to chores it seems we are teaching that manna falls from heaven and the world owes us a living.


Setting up a pretend situation to teach someone a lesson rarely teaches them the lesson we want them to learn. If you have the ability to give someone something and you make them jump through some arbitrary hoop to get it, you're teaching them that having power rocks and lacking power sucks.


If someone thinks their kids can't see the difference between a dad who already has $10 in his hand and won't give it to them unless they mow the lawn and a company that won't hand out a salary to someone who isn't providing the company with the labor that brings in money, then they aren't thinking much of their kids' intelligence.


There are plenty of real opportunities to experience how great it feels to get something for honest effort. Planting a garden for instance. We don't need to make them work in order for them to see the reward. We can help them to the extent they want help and they can see for themselves what happens. They may see that where they weeded the plants grew better than where they didn't. They may decide the effort to get that difference isn't worth it right now. The freedom to make choices we would gives them the opportunity to experience real decision making and learn about themselves.



Joyfully Rejoycing
bottom of page