Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Parent to Parent: Allowance
Vacuuming the living room, $3. Picking up the messy storage room, $7. A valuable lesson in earning money, priceless! But it doesn't always come easy.
WSVN -- Jacquelyn: "I didn't know it was going to be this hard."
And 10-year-old Jacquelyn is learning a lot about the value of money.
Jacey German: "I'll pay you $7 to clean the whole room."
Seven's parenting expert Dr. Valerie Goode says, "The earlier you start teaching, the better."
Dr. Valerie Goode: "I would start at about age three, when they start asking for toys. So when you take them to the toy store and they ask for a toy, it's very important for them to understand they can't just have any toy."
Set a yearly toy allowance, and give them opportunities to earn money if they want any additional toys.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "Give a child a little bit of an opportunity to think on his own how to earn some money and they will, they will."
Also, make sure your child knows that not every job comes with a paycheck. Draw the line between chores and family responsibilities.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "If you want the beds made and your child to make his bed, he should make his bed. He shouldn't get paid for it."
This way, your child feels like he or she is part of the family and still has the option of helping out for money.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "When you offer money for a chore, you're also offering a choice to your child. You're child could turn around and say, 'I don't need the $3 for cleaning the floor.'"
As they get older, teach your kids the money basics, like the definition of "interest" or how to balance a checkbook. Dr. Valerie says, in the long run, it will do a lot more than just teach your child how to count coins.
Dr. Valerie Goode: "When you have control over your money, you feel good, so why should that be an additional worry? Your child should have pride in the ability to save money."
Jacquelyn is now just $10 away from earning enough for a new pair of shoes she's been dying to get, but she'll be walking away with something even more valuable.
Jacquelyn: "They are giving these lessons to me to know that money doesn't just grow on trees."
Dr. Valerie also recommends playing money-related games with your child to give them a fun way to learn how to save and spend.
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