Saturday, December 5, 2009

Earning his keep.

This week marked a first for our little man. He learned a new word. (Thankfully one that he can use in public...) Chores. Yes, he's only 3 and 1/2 but that means he's practically 4 and that makes him not that far away from 12, really, and then it's almost time to decide what to get him for graduation. Sweet mercy, where did the time go?

So, yes, chores. Or chore, as the case may be. His job?

Canine food management (i.e. filling Daisy's food bowl).

With each full bowl, he claims (and shakes) his booty. He gets a coin to put in his piggy bank. And because this teacher can't let go of teachable moments, we talk about what the coin is and how much it's worth, etc.

(excuse the unexcusebly bad picture. yikes)

Eventually we'll start separating into save, give, spend but for now it's all in one bank while he learns a little responsibility. Also, for now, his "allowance", if that's what you want to call it, is earned by chores. In a few years, it may move to books. We're definitely throwing around the idea.

I once heard John Maxwell speaking at an Arbonne conference and he shared how his kids earned their allowance by reading. When his kids found out that their friends earned theirs simply by taking out the trash, etc, stuff they were already expected to be doing, they got mad and asked why they had it differently. Dr. Maxwell explained that on one hand, they didn't need to get paid to be an active and responsible part of the family, on the other hand, he said, "If I wanted you to become garbage-men, I'd pay you to take out the garbage." Hence, paying them to read.

However, if we paid Eliot for reading books at this stage, we'd have to take out a sizable loan. So, perhaps once he's older and into actual reading, specifically books that take more than 2 minutes to finish and don't include Lightening McQueen as the main character. Kaaaaa-chow.


Casey said...

I love what Dave Ramsey suggests...he paid his kids a "commission" for 3-5 of the 10-15 that they had to do on a regular basis. He choose not to call it an allowance because nobody would make "allowance" for them in life. A commission suggests getting paid for a job done.

When I heard this it made me think and I think it makes a lot of sense. Once they get old enough, he would also use dollar bills (wadded up) in a clear jar. It became more visual than a piggy bank because the children could see it filling up.

Just some thoughts...I'll look forward to seeing what other comments and ideas others have. Our first one has just turned three.

Amanda said...

brilliant!! Flor got a handful of change from her uncle the other night and so her tiny piggy bank is almost full... :( But I like this idea!

Bob Hansel said...

that's some good looking furniture in the background of the picture!!