Why We Pay Our Children for Doing Chores

Why We Pay Our Kids for Doing Chores

As parents, one of our desires is to instill in our children skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives. We only get around 18 years to train, teach, nurture, and mentor our children. Ultimately, they are responsible for the choices they make. But we want to do everything we can to help guide them now to lay a strong foundation for their future.

One way we’re seeking to teach our children valuable skills is by paying them for doing chores. I know that the whole concept of giving allowances or paying your children can be controversial. But here’s what we’ve decided: we want to give our children the best money management skills possible. In order to do so, they need to be handling money. And we believe the best time to start them is when they are young.

So, we set up a system of Non-Paid Chores and Paid Chores few years ago and, so far, it’s worked really well. Here’s the basic rundown on it:

Non-Paid Chores are chores you are required to do as a member of our family. These are non-optional; we’re a team and we all need to pull our own weight for our family to function well. These are things like vacuuming, cleaning your room, cleaning the bathroom, laundry, and so forth.

Paid Chores are chores you can elect to do and get paid to do. The only requirement is that your Non-Paid Chores have to be done first before you do any Paid Chores (well, you’re welcome to do them, but you won’t get paid for them if your Non-Paid Chores aren’t done first!). These are things like vacuuming out the car, sweeping the garage, cleaning Mom & Dad’s bathroom… the list of options changes based upon what things need to be done around the house at the time.

Why We Pay our Kids For Doing Chores

Here are four reasons we have decided to pay our children for doing chores:

1. We Want to Encourage a Strong Work Ethic

One of the greatest gifts my parents gave me growing up was a strong work ethic. They provided us many opportunities to work hard and while I didn’t always enjoy those long hours of hard work around the house and on our land, I look back now and know that much of my persevering attitude is a direct result of those opportunities.

By giving our children the option to do extra chores and get paid for them, we’re teaching them that there are rewards for hard work. It’s been so fun to see them experience those rewards firsthand!

2. We Want to Teach Real-Life Skills

We have our children start paying for things from a young age. In fact, from the time all our children were three or four years old, they had their own spending money that they had earned by doing chores and projects for us.

When we’re out shopping, they can bring their own spending money and spend it however they’d like (within reason!). This helps them learn valuable money management skills and also prevents the gimme attitude that can quickly pop up when out shopping. If a child sees something they want and they ask me if we can buy it, my response is always, “Did you bring your money?”

I also love the real-life skills our children are learning from taking their items up to the register and paying for them themselves. They learn about counting change, interacting with sales clerks, and making sure they have enough money to pay for their items in the first place. :)

Why We Pay our Kids for Doing Chores

3. We Want Them to Make the $3 Mistakes

When our children to use their own spending money to buy things they want to purchase, we don’t give a whole lot of input or guidance — unless they ask us for it. Why? Because we want them to learn how to think through the wisdom of purchases on their own. We won’t always be around to guide their purchases, so we want them to learn to think through what the best deal is and what the best use of their money is without a lot of prodding from us.

We also want them to make money mistakes. This might seem harsh, but we’d much rather have them make $3 mistakes now when they are little to hopefully prevent some $3,000 and $30,000 mistakes down the road.

They’ve learned a lot of lessons when they bought cheap items that were broken within a few days and they’ve learned that spending all your hard-earned money on some impulse purchase can often lead to regret. These instances have resulted in great discussions about how to carefully think through purchases and how to make sure you’re making the best use of your money.

4. We Want to Provide Them Opportunities to Give

One of the greatest joys of paying our children for doing chores has been watching them become generous givers. We encourage them to set aside a portion of their money for giving and we regularly talk about the needs around the world.

We’ve been so proud to watch our children fund Operation Christmas Child boxes and buy goats and chickens and help fund a water project for those in other countries through Samaritan’s Purse. Truly, there has been nothing more rewarding as a parent than seeing our children want to follow our family’s mantra to “Live simply so others can simply live.”

Do you pay your children for chores? Why or why not? I’d love to hear your thoughts. {And if you disagree with anything in my post, I want to hear your thoughts… we’re still learning and very much a work in progress as parents!}

Note: The Give, Save, Spend Wallets were sent to us as a gift from Melissa from A Time For Everything. My kids LOVE them! Thank you, Melissa!

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48-Hour Giveaway: 10-Piece Traditions Ceramic Saucepan Set (1 Winner)


Need a new set of saucepans? Then you’ll definitely want to check out this giveaway!

The 10-piece Traditions Ceramic Saucepan Set is the only long-handled 100% ceramic saucepan set made in the world! These sauce pans are elegant and classic and 100% non-scratch.

Traditions 10-piece Saucepan Set Giveaway

You know what I thought was really amazing about these sauce pans? Not only can you use them on the stovetop, you can also use them on the grill, in the microwave, or even the broiler!

Even better, they are crafted to withstand extreme heat and cold so they can go directly from oven to freezer! Plus, they are dishwasher safe!

The 10-piece Traditions Ceramic Saucepan Set includes:

  • 16-oz. Saucepan with cover– weight: 2 lbs
  • 1-qt. Saucepan with cover– weight: 2.3 lbs
  • 1.5-qt. Saucepan with cover– weight: 3.0 lbs
  • 2.5-qt. Saucepan with cover– weight: 3.9 lbs
  • 2 Black Silicone potholders

Through the end of April, the 10-piece saucepan set is on sale for 21% off and they are offering free shipping, too!

Would you like to enter to win a 10-piece Traditions Ceramic Saucepan Set? I have one set to give away this week. To enter, just click on the graphic below and type in your name and email address. One winner will be chosen and posted early next week. This giveaway ends Friday, April 25, at 11:59 pm, CST.

Enter the Giveaway

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Swagbucks Paid For My Copy of Say Goodbye to Survival Mode

Say Goodbye

Today’s Swagbucks success story is from Anna:

I got my copy of Say Goodbye to Survival Mode for free using Swagbucks!

Our libraries didn’t have it, so I sent in an order request. However, I really wanted to get started reading Crystal’s book sooner. Then I remembered that I had a few Amazon.com gift cards (thanks to Swagbucks) and quickly got on Amazon to purchase the book.

Since 2009, Swagbucks has given our family $250 of Amazon gift cards so far.

I first learned about Swagbucks from MoneySavingMom.com and signed up based on the post and comments from other readers. I didn’t do much with it and got $5 every two months. It was not until I started paying attention to the Swagbucks Success Stories featured on MoneySavingMom.com that the wheels started turning for me. The most inspiring was Elsie’s story of using Swagbucks to start her soap business.

Since then, Swagbucks has paid for at least 23 items for our family — I’ve bought a Bible, Bible covers, 3DS game, books, DVDs, DVD album case, surge protector, Ethernet cable, coconut oil, US and world maps, and many more random things that I would have ended paying full price at a big-box store. I’ve also bought homeschooling books, woodworking supplies, and ebooks.

Every day, I try to reach my daily goal by doing the poll, NOSO, Encrave (under Discover/Activities) and Swagbucks TV. Sometimes, I do surveys, use coupons, and Shop and Save (used it for Autozone) and inbox videos.

Now I can get from $15-$20 of Amazon gift card each month! Plus, instead of sitting and waiting for each activity, like those Encrave videos, I started exercising. So, Swagbucks also helped me lose weight!

I tell anyone who will listen about Swagbucks!

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Eating From the Pantry: Day 3

Eating From the Pantry

It’s Day 3 of our Eating from the Pantry Challenge and the fridge and cupboards are getting barer. And we’re almost finished with all the packing, too. Just a few little odds and ends and part of our bedroom and we’re D-O-N-E! Yay!

It was a beautiful day and we made the most of it by spending a few hours in the afternoon with some friends at the park.

Eating From the Pantry

Don’t you just love the beauty of farm fresh eggs?

Eating from the Pantry

I found a club soda in the cupboard, so I introduced the kids to it. They weren’t big fans, but I loved it with a little lime juice. So refreshing!

Eating from the Pantry

Popcorn is a favorite snack at our house! It’s been a few weeks since we’ve made it, so it was a great from-the-pantry snack for today!

Here’s the run down on what we had today:

Breakfast: Baked Oatmeal

Lunch: Fried Eggs, oranges, Banana Bread (I had a salad.)

Snack: Popcorn, apples with almond butter

Dinner: Baked chicken with spices, oranges, green beans

Eating From the Pantry

Are you eating from the pantry this week? If you are, leave a comment telling us what you ate today. Or, if you’re blogging about this challenge, leave a link to your direct blog post below that details what you ate for the Pantry Challenge today. I can’t wait to see your creative ideas!

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4 Strategies to Become a Successful Speaker

5 Steps to Become a Public Speaker

I just finished writing my first book and have been working on building a social media presence. I’m excited about these things, but I’d also really like to have the opportunity to speak at events. However, I’m not sure how to get started or how you go about building a speaking business. If you have any suggestions on where to begin, I value any input you can give me. -Jenny

Such a great question, Jenny! Congratulations on finishing your first book — how exciting!

I never set out to become a public speaker. In fact, as I shared in this post, it was truly one of the last things I would have ever seen myself doing. However, as the opportunities began coming my way and I realized this was something that God was calling me to do, I’ve sought to be intentional and strategic in developing myself as a public speaker.

Here are some suggestions I’d have for you:

1. Define Your Market

Before you even start down the journey of becoming a public speaker, I think it’s important to define your market. What audiences do you see yourself speaking to? Are you a comedian, a corporate speaker, a Christian women’s speaker, etc?

Do you see yourself giving workshops and training seminars? Or do you picture yourself being up on a keynote stage giving inspirational messages? Or are you something entirely different or somewhere in between?

Take a long hard look at what audiences you want to reach. It could be multiple types of audiences, but from the get-go, don’t just say, “I’ll be happy to speak to anyone, anywhere.” Otherwise, you’re probably setting yourself up for frustration, exhaustion, or failure.

For instance, I have three topics that I speak on: intentional finance, intentional family, and intentional business. All of my presentations fall under one of these headings. If an audience of car mechanics asked me to come in and talk on how to fix your car, I’m not their girl.

Defining what I’m about has helped me to be selective on what speaking opportunities I’ll accept. And it also helps me and my team to be able to clearly communicate what I’m about when events are interested in having me come speak.

2. Practice Your Presentations

If there is one huge mistake you can make when preparing for an event, it’s to not prepare enough. I cannot stress enough how import it is to practice your talks over and over again when you are first starting out.

In fact, I’d encourage you to practice them standing up exactly as you plan to deliver them, including using your slide presentation and any props, at least 3 full times before you ever deliver a talk on stage. If possible, ask a few family members or friends to watch these practices and give their feedback.

Yes, this takes a LOT of time upfront, but it’s SO worth it. Why? Because not only does practice allow you to familiarize yourself with the material, but you’ll also likely find places you want to rework and refine. Each practice session will make the talk just a little bit better, helping you to then deliver it with confidence and ease once you’re up on stage.

In addition, when you practice your talk multiple times, you become really comfortable with it. When the inevitable mishap occurs — such as the mic not working right or the slides not working or some other tech issue (it seems there’s always something!) — you aren’t thrown off track because you know your material well.

One final note on practicing: I’ve become a big fan of giving the same presentations over and over again to different groups. Right now, I only have 10 talks that I give. If an event asks me to come speak, those are the talks I offer.

I always tweak my talks for the specific audience and always update them so that they are relevant and fresh, but for the most part, the bones of the talk stay the same once I get them to a place where I feel like they are really strong. I’ve found that by giving the same talks again and again, they just get better with time as I learn what works best with multiple audiences.

5 Steps to Becoming a Public Speaker

My favorite part of traveling & speaking is getting to meet readers face-to-face!

3. Offer Your Services

Once you’ve defined who your ideal audience is and you’ve created and practiced some talks, it’s time to get out there and start speaking! For many people, this can be the hardest part.

But here’s the thing: it doesn’t have to be really difficult to find audiences to speak to if you’re not too picky about who your audience is. There are many community centers, libraries, and even nursing homes that will allow you to come in and speak. All you have to do is call and offer!

Sure, there might only be a handful of people who show up, but speaking to just a small room of people can be great practice in the beginning. Plus, if you mess up or struggle through sections, you’ve only embarrassed yourself in front of a small group!

These small audiences might not be your long-term ideal audiences, but don’t be discouraged by that. Realize that every small opportunity is practice and preparation for the bigger opportunities. You usually have to do a lot of small things well before you are ready for the bigger opportunities. So give your very best to each audience, no matter the size!

As you become more comfortable with speaking, seek out other opportunities. Maybe offer to give a workshop at a local conference or church, offer to speak at schools or other community groups. You probably won’t get paid for these opportunities, but take them anyway. When you’re starting out, just be grateful for any opportunity to practice your presentations in front of a live audience!

4. Refine Your Speaking

After you’ve had 5-10 speaking opportunities, go back to the drawing board. Consider what’s working and what’s not.

When I first started speaking, I was just so grateful for any opportunity that I would speak on pretty much whatever I was asked to, within reason. I quickly learned what kinds of talks and subjects worked for me and what didn’t. I wouldn’t have known, though, had I not gone out there and tried.

Go back to step number one and see if you need to re-define your market at all. Start deciding which 3-5 talks are your favorites and really working on refining and tweaking those.

If possible, I wholeheartedly encourage you to hire a speaking coach. If you’re interested in hearing more about this, read this post on how my speaking coach, Michele, has completely changed my entire approach to speech preparation.

I also highly, highly, highly recommend attending the SCORRE conference. I went last year — mostly dragging my feet — and the whole process and training transformed me from the inside out.

Not only have I become a much more dynamic speaker as a result of SCORRE, but I’m all-around more confident in who I am, what I am about, and the message I’m called to share. If you want to improve as a communicator in any field — speaking, writing, blogging, and more — do yourself a huge favor and attend SCORRE.

For more tips on improving as a speaker, read my post on how I got over my lifelong fear of public speaking.

What advice and suggestions do the rest of you have for Jenny?

photo credit

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The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle: $698 of Homemaking ebooks + more than $200 worth of bonuses for just $29.95

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