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Yesterday’s Dollar Tree shopping trip (and a lesson in finances for the girls)

We’ve been using Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace Junior with Kathrynne and Kaitlynn to teach them the value of money and stewardship. In addition to their daily required (unpaid) chores, we also have a list of extra paid chores they can choose to do if they’d like. We want our children to learn that there are chores you do as part of being an asset to our family and there are extra chores you can choose to do and get paid for.

While this is not exactly how it works in real-life, we thought it would be a great way to help them learn the value of work and money on a small scale. So far, they are pretty excited about it — most of the time, at least! 🙂 — and it’s working out well. Plus, it’s providing lots of great opportunities to teach life lessons when it comes to work ethic, why we save, why we want to be givers and so much more.

Last week they had their first “Pay Day” and they were quite thrilled! At this point, we’re letting them choose how they want to spend the money in their “spend” category. So we went to Dollar Tree yesterday and they got to spend their own hard-earned money on a few items of their choosing.

It’s exciting to watch as they begin to grasp the basic concepts of giving, saving and spending.

Please note: We don’t profess to know much about this child-raising thing; we’re just learning as we go. I share this with you as an example of what we’re doing in our home, not setting it up as something you should emulate in your home. Do what works best for your family and your children!

While at Dollar Tree, I also picked up some more Nature’s Own Bread for just $1 per loaf. (Nevermind the fact that one bag is half eaten. We love Cinnamon Swirl bread around here! Yum!)

How are you teaching your children about giving, saving and spending? I’d love to hear your ideas and suggestions.

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  • I LOVE that Dollar Tree carries Nature’s Own Bread! Love it!

    We are starting something similar with our son right now. For my blog I was able to review a Money Savvy Pig and it’s been a great teaching tool! I hadn’t heard of Dave Ramsey’s jr plan though, I’ll have to check that out.

  • Samantha says:

    Wow, I love the idea of mandatory unpaid chores and optional paid chores. My little boy is only 2, but in the future when we start chores I think this will be the route we follow!

    I hope your girls made some wise purchases 🙂

    • Jana says:

      Wish I would have started this with my 20 year old at 2 good luck with the efforts.

    • Janet says:

      I did this for years ! Years ago and I do think it does sort of work this way in everyday life. If you just have job where you work 9 to 5 you tend to not get ahead. If you do your real job to pay your bills (you unpaid chores) then you have side jobs or hustles to have some spending money. (At lest this is how I taught my 28 and 27 year olds and they still have side jobs one is an attorney and the other is an MD and they both still have main pay and side pay)

      Main pay pays living expenses and save for the future , side pay they use for wants and wishes!

      Everyone always had the opinion of I was such a mean Mom but my children have been totally independent since 18 and never phone home for help.

      • brookeb says:

        You could also look at it as the things that you have to do for money are part of your job/career when you’re older, but you also have to do chores around your house that no one pays you for, but you are still expected to do just to be a functioning adult. 🙂

        • Janet says:

          Great concept as well. I also had mine do helpful things for grandparents and aunt and uncles at no pay to equate to this part of life. Plus, we had charity that we did for those who were less fortunate and they never could take one penny for any of that as well.

          I think the point is to do what works best for you your children and your home but my point was that I had many friends and family criticise what I was doing , only to ask me 10 to 15 years later how I would get them to do things when they were teens and early 20’s the point is the tough work is when they are young. Don’t try to be a friend be a parent. When they get older transfer to more like a counselor or manager so that they can learn!
          Don’t try to

  • Anna says:

    Your daughter’s are so beautiful! My girls have curly hair like yours do and it is beautiful but a bear to take care of–my daughters have curls to their waists.

    PS I/we love the Dollar Store too!

    • Jenny says:

      My daughter and I also have curly hair, and brushing through Lilly’s was a bear until I found a product called “It’s a 10!” We get it at Walmart salon (Smartstyle). I’m sure it is available other places as well, but it works amazing! It’s not the cheapest product, but so worth it not to have the tears!

  • peever says:

    I really need to stop at our Dollar Tree and see if they have that bread. It’s not exactly the most convenient stop for me, but $1 for bread is pretty good!

    We haven’t done the Financial Peace Junior, but we’ve read all of Dave Ramsey’s childrens books and the kids liked them. We got a responsibility system when it was on sale on Black Friday from and I really like it, but I am still working on the follow through to make sure that things get done. That’s the hardest part for me! My kids aren’t really motivated by money yet.

    • Mary says:

      This is such a cute idea! thank you for sharing. 🙂

    • peever says:

      I just thought I’d expand on our system since others are looking for chore ideas.

      We don’t require a lot of unpaid chores because there really isn’t any time. My son goes to school so by the time he gets home, has a snack, and does his homework, there’s only a little time left for us to play outside and then it’s time for me to make dinner. We start the bedtime process immediately after dinner so getting chores done during the week for school aged children (who aren’t homeschooled) is tough.

      The kids are required to make their beds, do their homework, and keep their rooms picked up. Those are things that are expected and not paid for. We ask them to do at least 1 paid chore per day. With the responsibility system that we have that I posted above, the kids pick out a chore stick from a bucket. We pay 25 cents per stick. They can do as many as they want.

      We do have a couple of “grace” chore sticks in there like “read your sister a book” or “give someone a hug” on those days were there’s not a lot of time or when they’re just not in the mood because I have those days, too. If they’ve used a “grace” stick, I remove that from the bucket for a little while so they’re not doing freebies every day.

      Some of the chore sticks that we have for our 7yo: wash windows, set table, clear table, put away clean laundry, collect dirty laundry and take it to the laundry room, dust a room, vacuum a room, wipe off bathroom counter, mop kitchen floor, clean playroom, “dish dash” – collect any dirty dishes lying around, “toy dash” – pick up any toys that have been left out, feed cats, etc.

      The chore sticks for our 3yo are pretty similar. We just have some modifications for her if needed, like she just collects the dirty laundry in the laundry basket and I take the basket downstairs for her.

  • Shannon says:

    We implement the same type of chore system in our home. My kids both have chores that they do then extra chores the can do it they like. If they do these extra chores they earn an allowance. We do require a minimum amount of their money go directly into their bank account, then the balance they may spend how they choose.

  • heather f says:

    What kind of chores do you have as unpaid and what are some that you guys do as extra paid chores? I have a 5 year old and we are just starting to make a plan for this and are struggling on this part! Thanks for your blog–love it!

    • My 5 year old has to clean his room (clean enough to vacuum), clean his sink (get the toothpaste out, he uses a wipe to do that), dust the stairs and clean one window of my choice (at least as high as he can reach). He gets $1 for each of the first two chores and $0.50 for each of the last two. Cleaning the window was his choice, BTW, he really likes spraying the Windex.

  • Maria says:

    I wonder if my Dollar Tree has that bread. Yum!

  • Ginger says:

    With our 6yo we do a similar plan. She has unpaid chores and paid chores. The paid are more spontanous such as if you put away that pile of items you get quarter, sort laundry, watch brother for 5 min ect. Everything equal to 30 min. of easy work is a quarter. BUT she has to pay for some things such as explorer, tv, computer time cost a quarter. She also uses it to get icecream at school. My favorite chore system for her age is if she is grounded for a bad behavior-in some cases she can be ungrounded if she cleans her room while in there. I would rather her punishment time for something useful-then just sitting.

    • Becky says:

      I really like that idea. My daughter is only two, but i”m going to write that one down for future reference.

    • Kelly says:

      That’s a great idea for the ‘ungrounding’. When my DDs receive a consequence, they are always looking for how to get it undone ASAP. Sometimes I tell them there isn’t a way, but I REALLY like this idea!

  • LifeAsAMomma says:

    In our home, we do something similar. (I have been thinking about doing a blog posting on it as well) My son also has his regular chores that he is responsible for doing w/o any pay.
    He can also choose to do additional chores and recieve a Gavin dollar. It’s a fake dollar with his picture on it. He can then ‘buy’ things in my Mom Store. The Mom Store has random items for ‘sale.’
    Our family (uncles, aunts, grandparents, ect.) don’t usually give gifts to our kids for birthdays and Christmas. They give money. My son is required to put half of what he recieves in his savings account at the bank and he can spend the other half. We have been doing this for the past 3 (or so) years and he has over $400 saved so far! He is SO proud of his money and now can’t wait to take his money to the bank!

    • Suzy says:

      Keep up the great work and habit. My parents ‘made’ us save 50% of all gifts and money we earned and I was able to travel around the world and put $ down on my first house.

      This money will be life changed for him later on in his life. You think he is proud now, wait until later when all his friends are struggling and he has this amazing gift to use towards something wonderful and has the knowledge of how to save.

      Best wishes!

  • Edi Mathews says:

    LOoooooooooooove Dollar tree, I got Fiber one bars there the 90 calorie ones for $1.00 they run anywhere from $3.50 to $4.50 at the grocery store. They go onsale sometimes for 2/5.00, so happy!!!

    • Christina says:

      Ahh! I will have to check my Dollar Tree for those! I LOVE them.

    • Mary says:

      Really!? I am going to have to look for these also.

    • Amanda says:

      does doller tree take coupon’s?

      • Gail says:

        They do NOT accept coupons. According to the FAQ on Dollar Tree’s website: “So that we may continue to provide you extreme value for $1.00 when shopping at one of our retail stores, we reserve the right to limit quantities, do not offer refunds nor accept coupons, and consider all sales final. ” Hope this helps!

  • rose says:

    I would lone more info. My daughter is 5 she has a few chores to do but would like input on what chores others have there children do.

    We have her set the table, take care of her toys and she helps with laundry, but I wouldd love to give her the option of doing more to earn money.
    She is saving for disney. We are taking her in may but she has no idea! She s saving to buy herself something special when we go.

    • Natalia says:

      My 5 year old is capable of washing windows, wiping bathroom counters, wiping down lower kitchen cabinets, wiping down base boards, setting/clearing the table, cleaning out from under a bed, emptying bathroom garbage, dusting, vacuuming the stairs, taking out recycling, sorting laundry and cleaning his room/attempting to make his bed. We have a chore box. It is a “penalty” for being sassy/disrespectful or disobedient. They have to “pull a chore” instead of sitting on a time-out or getting a spanking. All the chores listed above are mixed in the box.

    • Ginger says:

      My 6yo is the responsible one with a 8yo brother w/ severe autism and 1yo brother the bulk of ‘kid chores’ fall on her. I will pick up the living room dumping all item in a pile that go elsewhere-her job is to put those items in the correct rooms. She also sorts laundry, folds towels, fixes snacks, cleans her room (non paid chore), keep a quick watch on brothers (when I do laundry or cooking), feed animals, put away some dishes, wash windows. That is most of it. Other items as needed. Last week she helped me clean my car, vaccum ect. BUT we keep everything positive, she only HAS to do immediate such as watch boys real quick. The others I let her choose-if she wants the money she will do it. And since she has to pay to play explorer, watch tv or movies she has motivation!

  • Megan says:

    I’m completely lost on what will work for my 4-year-old – she has an emotional disorder and that is very tough to deal with, so I’m lucky if she’ll pick up her clothes or make her bed! Your girls look absolutely angelic and well-behaved!

    • Brynn says:

      Hi Megan – I just want to encourage you. My 5 yr old daughter has sensory processing disorder, and this kind of thing is hard for her too. When I read things like this, and see children that “look absolutely angelic and well-behaved” it’s easy for me to feel a little down. But take heart – your daughter will do things in HER time and that is ok!! We are still working on the chores thing – some days I don’t even bother bc it’s such a battle. But the days that I have patience, and strength, I sit on the floor with her and help her do her chore of sorting laundry, or I put on music and dance with her while we dust. Much love to you.

      • Eileen says:

        My 5 yo son has SPD as well and setting chores has been a struggle for us too. Depending on the day he is having, sometimes it is a big enough chore just to get dressed in the morning! We do have a chore chart for him and my 3 yo son and it includes basic “self-help” tasks such as getting dressed, brush teeth, make bed, put on pjs, clear table, etc. They get a smiley face as they complete each item and then at the end of the week we count up the smiley faces and they get a nickle for each one which they put in their own special jar. Sometimes I want to get a more “sophisticated” system going so I can teach them better lessons, but I think my son will just get too overwhelmed – it will all come in time:)

      • Nichole says:

        Brynn – My 4 1/2 year old has a sensory processing disorder – so I can relate to your comment. I went to your blog to contact you, but couldn’t find an e-mail address. Would you be willing to share your story and/or is there any information on your blog about this disorder. Thank you so much! God Bless!

        • Brynn says:

          Hi Nichole – my blog is just ramblings really, about this and that, but I have written several times about my 5 year old and our journey with her. Just search older entries, especially the beginning ones. Thankfully, we’re at a better place now, and her “different abilities not disability” doesn’t take over our life like it used to. But yes, things like completing chores can be difficult!! 🙂 We’re works in progress, our whole family! I am grateful to God, and also we have had terrific help for her – we had private therapy for several months and the last 2 yrs she has been in the special services school district. If you give me your email somehow – how does that work on here? – I will email you. I am nervous to publicly post my email here. I am an open book though – hope we can get in touch somehow. 🙂

        • Carrie #2 says:

          Nicole, I was wondering the same thing about a blog about SPD. My 3 yr old daughter has it as well. I had never even heard of this until going through this journey with her (I’m still explaining to people at church about this disorder because none of them has ever heard of it either). My daughter has this in the area of her eating. It has taken on-going therapy to get her to eat anything solid (we still suppliment with baby food and Pediasure). I had heard of children who were picky eaters (I was one) but I had never heard of one who wouldn’t eat anything solid at all!!! I tell people that I honestly believe God gave her to me to make me “eat my words” for all the times I looked at other children who misbehaved and wonderd why their parents didn’t have better control over them. My older two acted great in public and I thought this was because we were such great parents. Now I know better and am much more sympathetic towards parents whose children aren’t behaving because there might be an underlying reason that we can’t “see” since my daughter looks “normal” and no one would ever know she has issues just by looking at her. Thank you, Megan, for mentioning this – it’s comforting to know others are going through this as well.

    • Shelley says:

      Megan- I am in the same position. Hang in there…

    • Jennifer says:

      I have a 9 year old with Asperger’s, and Sensory Intregration Disorder is a huge part of it. We waited a loooong time to get a diagnosis, too, so I think you’re lucky to get started with early intervention.

      Hang in there. On days (most days) when I feel overwhelmed, it helps so much to find a random comment like yours and see that so many others are dealing with, and making it through, with the same thing.

    • Megan says:

      Thanks for all the encouragement! Elaine has disruptive behavior disorder, and having our new baby last May proved detrimental to her! We’ve been working for the last year in-depth with a therapist and she’s begun to really flourish with the treatment, but there are those days of extreme defiance and anger that really break my heart!

    • Crystal says:

      Hugs and prayer sent your way as you deal with a difficult situation with your 4-year-old! 🙁

  • Erin says:

    I did not realize Financial Peace Jr was for kids so young! I am definitely going to be getting that!!

    We just started a chore system that sounds similar to yours. My son has to do some chores everyday no matter what – no reward (except praise). Then there are others he can do for tickets which he saves to get a movie night. And then there are additional chores he can do for money. All in all he has a total of about 10 or 12 chores he can do in a day.

  • Christina says:

    We do the exact same thing with our kids. They range in age from 14 to 5. The paid chores must be completed after their regular chores & if they have to go back more than once & complete a paid chore correctly they only get half pay. 25% of what they earn must go into their savings account no matter how little. I have a chart with chores they can pick out to do ranging from 1.00 to 5.oo each ( 4.00 & 5.00 chores can only be completed on weekends because they are a lot of work & time) There is also a 10.00 cap per week per child. They get paid each friday, the last day to complete a paid chore for the week & get paid on friday is thursday. I actually printed out a ledger for each kid so I can track how much they are earning & I am helping them fill out their savings account register every week. I also made up a contract with rules & regulations for the “paid chore program” & made them sign it =) I am actually pretty impressed with myself after coming up with a system to track who has completed what chore. LOL

  • Akhila says:

    I love Dollar Tree too. I haven’t seen bread there but then again I have not been there as much. Now that you mention it I want to go today lol. I have been doing the same thing. My girls are 12 and 8. The 8 year old gets it but the my oldest well she just want money to spend. We are working on it everyday and pray that something sticks with our oldest:) Thanks for sharing i love reading what you do with your family.

  • Michelle says:

    At just eight months old, my daughter isn’t ready to learn about any of that, but we had a little life lesson the other day: we had just gotten home from the grocery store and Pookie was ready to be nursed but for some reason I simply *had* to know when the Register Reward in my purse was going to expire…so as I dug through my wallet, she somehow got hold of my grocery cash.

    Bills were fluttering about in the air as Pookie sat in the middle, bawling her eyes out–all to show you that money can’t buy everything!

    P.S. I’m not a completely horrible mother; I promptly picked her up and fed and cuddled her. 😀

  • Chandler says:

    Anyone heard about Dollar tree taking coupons? I have heard some areas are, but my area currently isn’t included.

  • Karen says:

    I so wish our DT had Nature’s Own. That’s our favorite and it’s up to $2.50 here at the cheapest store and three dollars at the expensive one. YIKES!

    Karen in TN

  • Elizabeth Kamm says:

    Love love love the dollar tree! That is the place Avery spends her money she earns for the week with her envelope system and boy do they have great cleaners, hair bows, and dollar Sunday papers! Whohoo!

  • Ashley says:

    My son is 6 almost 7 and I am also interested in knowing what are some of the paid vs unpaid chores that people are using. He could really use more structure and responsibility especially since he always seems to want to buy something. Also do you use fake money or real money or do you just keep track. I think physical money (real or fake) would really motivate him.

    • Lynda says:

      At ages 6 and 7 our girls were responsible for keeping their rooms clean and helping pick up around the house. Kids can do more than people think they can. The most important thing to do is give kids enough time to complete a chore. I have seen parents get frustrated with how much slower a child is at putting away silverware for instance and just do it themselves. If people do that, kids will never learn to do chores.

      We have never paid allowances or paid for chores. That is a personal decision because we believe that children need to help around the house as part of being a member of that family. Today the oldest is 26 and the youngest is 8 and they are all good workers. We just bought our 8 year old some dishwashing gloves in her size because Saturday is her dish washing day. Yep, she’s slow, but so what? The dishes get clean. : )

      • Mindy says:

        I completely agree. They can learn about money and saving just as well from your example and teaching as you go through the store, etc. Everyone needs to help as a member of the family. I personally feel like children these days think they deserve a reward for doing just about everything instead of learning responsibility. For example, it’s their room and they made the mess so they need to clean it up. We didn’t have a bunch of kids so that in the future they would clean our house for us. It’s a life lesson. When they have a house later in life no one is going to pay them to clean it. They just need to know it is a part of life and needs to be done regardless. Again, these are just the personal opinions of my husband and myself. Do what works for you.

        • sarah says:

          I appreciate all that’s been posted as I’m trying to figure out if we do things “right.” I agree with not paying kids so much. I haven’t paid my six year old to help out around the house. When I have offered him a reward for something, it’s ended up in him expecting rewards the next time. Like, he’ll ask for a new toy from my stash for doing something extremely basic. Also, my son doesn’t seem to be motivated by money – what does that mean? I offered him money for every bucket of sweet gum balls he filled out in the yard and he didn’t even fill one – just wanted to play.

        • Miss Jay says:

          I think it is incredibly important for children to understand that they are expected to do chores around the house simply because they are part of the family, and without monetary gain. However, I also think it is incredibly important for children to learn from a very young age that money comes from work. If you don’t give your children an opportunity to work for their money, the only place they see it coming from is as a gift, and let’s face it, that’s not a very realistic view of money.

          If a child wants a particular toy, there is considerable value in teaching them how to work to earn it, and save for it, and buy it for themselves. They also take better care of the toys they have to work for.

          In response to Sarah below, some children are less interested in earning money. How much does your son understand about the value of money and why he might want to earn it? Have you done other life lessons to teach him the value of “delayed gratification”?

    • Melissa says:


      My daughters (3 and 5) have these daily chores to do unpaid:
      1. make bed
      2. pick up toys
      3. put away their laundry
      4. feed either cat or dog
      5. help with either laundry or sweeping
      6. Set the table or clear the table
      *They don’t get options, but have assigned days to do the either or chores.

      We’ve been discussing adding paid options, but haven’t started yet. When we do start (perhaps this summer?) We have small jars for them to put money for church and missions. I’m still looking for a cute “savings” jar. Hope it goes well for you!

      • Ashley says:

        Thank you. I think I’m gonna wait on the paid chores and just start with more structured unpaid chores first. Thanks again

  • Meredith says:

    How cute are those little flip flops! 😀

  • Courtney says:

    we have a similar plan for our two little boys…we usually take them to the Goodwill or other thrift stores and they LOVE it! We love to teach them at a young and tender age to buy used and save the difference! We might have to try out our dollar store soon too!!

  • Meg says:

    My sweet daughter wanted her brother to have a DS lite for his birthday. I told her that we are keeping things simple and that simply wasn’t in the budget, so she decided to save up the money for it herself. (She’s 9.) She worked so hard for 3 or 4 months getting extra chores from us, other people around us, and being a mother’s helper. She researched the cost of a used DS lite, and five days before my son’s birthday – without any extra help from us – she proudly walked into a Gamestop and paid cash for her brother’s birthday gift.

    I cried then. I still tear up when i tell the story. I love the fact that she’s such a hard worker with such a generous, giving spirit.

  • Heather S. says:

    My kids have chores that they have to do every week. If they don’t do the chore, then I give them extra chores on top of the original chore. I try to teach them that doing chores is just part of being in a family and we all have to do our part. On top of those chores, I will sometimes ask for additional help and again, if they argue, then I will give them an extra chore on top of it. It seems to have worked really well with them, and they don’t typically complain because they don’t want extra work. You can always find age appropriate chores. Even my two yr old helps by ‘helping’ put the new bag in the garbage can or getting dirty clothes and putting them in the basket. The sooner you start, the earlier they realize they are part of the solution.

  • sharon says:

    Your girls are wearing flip flops. I’m jealous. Over here in Michigan we’re still wearing boots and winter coats. Just had some snow/freezing rain.

    • Brandy says:

      I couldn’t believe they were still in pants and long sleeves. Where we are we’re wearing shorts and sleeveless shirts! (and flip flops) I couldn’t imagine still being in coats and boots!

      • lalalalala says:

        Grrrrrrrrrrr. lol

        We just got dumped on again last night. Coats and boots for us for a couple weeks yet (northern michigan) 🙁

        • Emilie says:

          It is still in the 20’s here in the UP of Michigan. My kids left for school with boots, snowpants, hats and mittens.

          My children 10, 8 and 4 are expected to clean their rooms, set and clear the table, get their laundry to the basement and other chores as a part of the family.

          I would like to pay them for some of the “extras” and like the idea that they would save half or use it for charity. I love the sticks in a can idea!

    • Haila says:

      Just thinking the same thing! We’re still freezing here in Minnesota!

  • Lee says:

    My kids also have daily chores that they don’t get paid for. But they don’t have ones they get paid for. We do offer them an allowance each week and that is tied to being good and attempting to do their chores to their best ability. We also feel that chores are just part of being in the family. I am always surprised at how many people I know whos kids don’t do any chores! I would love Crystal if you could do a review on the Dave ramsey Jr. we discussed buying that but we weren’t sure if it was the route we wanted to go.

  • Elisabeth says:

    We were actually at the Dollar Tree yesterday doing the exact same thing. I love watching my toddler’s learning these types of valuable lessons, plus they are fun!

    A friend and I also talked about the VERY thing you are doing at your home- paid and unpaid chores. Such a great idea. I taught Sunday School for younger girls and decided to brainstorm with them to find something to incentivize them to bring their scriptures to class. I asked them forthright and one girl (who is exemplary in many ares of her life and is on an Olympic Gymnastics track) said, “Just tell us how proud you are of us when we do bring them”. So simple and has stuck with me to this day. Too often we feel we have to reward our children for things that shouldn’t require rewards.

    Love your blog and share it whenever I can. You exemplify great things in simple and lovely ways!

  • Rachel says:

    I would love to hear what chores your kids do and what ages they started. I have a 1 and 3 year old and would love to start something.

    • Krysten says:

      I have a 1-year-old (16 months), so I’ll give you my ideas for that age, though I don’t have experience yet with a 3-year old! My little guy can put away his toys and books, so I try to have him do it every day (though sometimes we’re too busy and I just end up doing it – still working on that!). Some days he does it happily, and some days it’s a fight, but I’ve found that consistency is the key. If I tell him to do it, he HAS to do it.
      I’ve also found that at this age, he just wants to do whatever I’m doing. He loves to “help” with the dishes. After I wash each dish, he puts it into the other side of the sink to be rinsed (we put the breakable things in together!). When I’m cooking, I’ll hand him empty boxes, bags, and cans, and he’ll go put them in the trash can. When I’m moving things to vacuum, he can carry small items like shoes, and can “help” me push larger items.
      Oh, and his favorite chore is laundry! He loves to help load and unload the dryer and push the laundry basket to the couch and take all the clothes out for me!
      Hope this helps a little!

  • Heather near Atlanta says:

    Wait, what? You let your girls play with the toys in the store, but then they had to buy the family’s bread with their chore money?

    🙂 (teasing you)

    • Amara says:

      I think she said she’s making them pay for each slice they take from the bag. 😉 (She also encouraged them to buy dollar tree sand buckets for use when mopping floors.)

      More teasing.

      They look like sweet, discerning shoppers. Must have learned from mom. 🙂

  • Julie says:

    We also started FP Jr. with our children, ages 16, 13 and 9. I’ve struggled with the concept of allowance for years, wanting to teach our children that they had responsibilities as a member of a family. FP Jr. hit every nail on the head for us – work, give, save & spend. The program also suggests non-financial rewards, such as picking out a meal or a family movie. To keep it interesting for our 16yo, he has set up a spreadsheet to track all the chores, their price tag, frequency of assignment, as well as spreadsheets to track everyone’s money by week. We’ve been doing it since Christmas and everyone’s still on board!

  • Dan says:

    Hi there, if anyone has any extra amazon codes for this month I would appreciate it so much. I am a single dad raising my baby boy and trying to save every penny I can. All of this baby stuff is really expensive. thanks and god bless.

  • Mom2Seven says:

    Your children are all adorable! I haven’t found Natures Own bread at our Dollar Tree, but our local Big Lots has Natures Own (and Thomas’ Bagels) for $1.20, which is much cheaper than sale prices at our grocery store (Publix). So for anyone who can’t get the bread at Dollar Tree, try Big Lots if you have one near you.

  • Cindy says:

    We’ve been doing Financial Peace Jr with our girls for over a year now. It’s been wonderful! They are similar to your girls’ ages. I would love to hear more about what chores you have as required vs paid. We haven’t changed our paid list since getting starting it, and I think it would be fun to change it up some.

  • I LOVE that idea Crystal about how you are teaching your children.

    One thing I intend to do with my children in the area of finances is something I leared from Steve and Teri Maxwell… (Now I dont believe most of what they teach but I did like this principle) where, you earn you $$ (from however you do so) from infantcy and you tithe 10% of all you earn first, and then what you have left you divide into 2, 1/2 goes into savings immedietly and the other 1/2 is yours to do whatever. Every quarter/nickle/dime you earn is treated this way. And then what happened was by the time you are old enough to buy a house/start your family, you have enough to pay 100% cash down etc. Obviously when you are old enough to start getting a paycheck you could do Dave Ramsey but if you still live with your parents and are bringing home paychecks when your 16 this is a good principle. MY brother is 16 and starting to do this. I dont think he’ll have enouhg for a cash house but he will for a car and he’s able to pay his way for mission trips he wants to do.

    Anyway, that is a thought.

  • Emily says:

    We have used the Maxwell’s chore system for several years now. I have 5 children from 10 down to 9 months. I cannot do it in my own. From about 2 years on, my kids have been making their beds. Mind you it is not perfect by any means but it gets done. They also had simple chores as young ones like dumping the little trash cans into the big one or bringing the dirty clothes from the bathrooms to the laundry room. They did them just a few at a time instead of trying to carry a big basket. Needless to say that when I went on bedrest with my last baby, the house carried on. It was really great how the girls just did there normal everyday chores and things kept on running pretty smoothly.

    • Miss Jay says:

      I think you make a great point when you say the beds aren’t made perfectly. I see so many requests on here asking for chore ideas. All you need to do is list the chores YOU do, and modify them in ways the kids can help. It will take longer for them to do it than for you to just do it for them. And it won’t look as great as when you do it yourself. And it will take you time to check over their work and have them correct the lazy/sloppy parts. And there is effort to keep track and pay them. But the lessons you are teaching them are invaluable, and the younger you begin the better for them in the long run.

      Some ways kids can help: Have them make their own beds. I expect them to make their beds and they get paid if they make mine. (I have 2 kids 3 & 6, they can mange well enough if each takes a ‘side’). They pick up their own toys and clothes, no pay, but occasionally we will do a larger cleaning/sorting job that they get paid to help with.

      They help gather clothes for laundry, help me put them in the W & D, I fold, they help put away. They help me dust (we all get a cloth) They help me move small things out of the way when we vaccuum. They help me carry recycle out to the bin. They count with me as I measure while cooking. They throw garbage away, and put lids back on things for me. My 6 year old can use a chair to get certain ingrediants.

      When I sweep they help move chairs and help hold the dustpan. When I mop, they get washcloths and get the supersticky parts the mop doesn’t do well. They help unload the dishwasher. Silverware is a really fun one you can start as young as 2 years – they LOVE sorting things at that age. In the bathroom, they can put toothbrushes away, and wipe the counters. I do tubs and toilets for now. Our bathrooms are really small – too difficult for all of us to be in there together, and that is one of the places I am very particular about the job being done well.

      I have noticed that when I get ‘lazy’ and just do all the chores myself while the kids play, they begin to feel entitled that time, and get grumbly about helping. But most of the time, all it takes is me asking ‘who wants to help mama with something’ and they come running.

  • Emily says:

    We have used the Maxwell’s chore system for several years now. I have 5 children from 10 down to 9 months. I cannot do it in my own. From about 2 years on, my kids have been making their beds. Mind you it is not perfect by any means but it gets done. They also had simple chores as young ones like dumping the little trash cans into the big one or bringing the dirty clothes from the bathrooms to the laundry room. They did them just a few at a time instead of trying to carry a big basket. Needless to say that when I went on bedrest with my last baby, the house carried on. It was really great how the girls just did there normal everyday chores and things kept on running pretty smoothly.

  • Shannon says:

    I have a 4 1/2 year old and would love an idea of paid/unpaid chores for her age group. She helps with the laundry (when I remember to ask her), but I would like to start being a little more structured with it. I’m just at a loss when it comes to thinking of things for her to do. Any ideas?

  • Conni says:

    When my kids were younger, I would post “Help Wanted” posters on the fridge. The child that was interested in the “job” had to bring me the poster, and then be “interviewed” for the job. Then a wage was negotiated, and paid when the job was completed. Some of the jobs had bonuses, too! I should mention that we did not give our children allowances, so the opportunity to earn a little bit of extra funds was well received.

    • Ashley says:

      that is so cute and creative 🙂

    • Kate says:

      I love this idea for extra chores! I think I will try it tomorrow. I am betting it will be a big hit. We are saving for a vacation right now, so I will stipulate to the interviewee that the money earned goes into the family vacation jar. Thanks for this simple, fun idea!

  • Jen says:

    Wow! Love all the ideas!! I have always wanted to do something like this when I have my own kids, which is something we are planning on doing.

  • jessica leman says:

    we do this as well and I love it! If you ask our two oldest (5 and 3) why they have “mandatory chores” they will say “because we are a part of this family”. Its cute and I love what its stamping into their hearts.

  • Bethany says:

    My girls are 3 and 2 and I’ve always had them involved in the daily management of the house. They “help” with washing breakfast dishes, unloading the dishwasher, laundry, cooking dinner, dusting, picking up toys, etc…they even bring their dishes to the kitchen without me asking. (Took a while tho, lol) They have fun as long as you just make it a natural part of your every day with them, it’s not really much of a chore to

  • Noah says:

    Do you do the “spend/save/giving” system with them? That’s what we do. Some money to spend, some to save, some to giving (and giving includes giving some at church and some to whatever charity he chooses when he has saved some up). Last year he chose to give to make a wish foundation. We included a note that the donation was from our 6yo and they even sent him a special letter and some pictures of kids he was helping. I think that really gave him a good picture of “why” we give.

  • Kris says:

    When our kids reached junior high we were getting nickle and dimed to death for all kinds of activities. We found a great idea in a book called Teenproofing. We gave our children a set amount of money each month. They got paid on the 1st of the month. It was used for their lunch money and any activities they wanted to do. It eventually was used for gas money once they were 16. It taught them how to budget a set amount of money and set priorities. We would often find them packing a sack lunch so that their money could be used for “fun”. One thing that we did do was if they were doing something with a sibling we would pay for it to encourage them to do things together.

    • Kim says:

      Love this idea for when my kids are a little older. Thanks for sharing.

    • K says:

      I knew a family with 4 boys that did this years ago. It worked very well. They had to buy everything with the money given to them (including their outfits for private school). Thank you for sharing.

    • Kadee says:

      A friend was raised like this from a very young age. Her monthly allowance had to pay for everything, from activities to lunches to clothes to personal items. It taught her well. She lives in a beautiful paid for house, has never needed or had a car loan, student loan, credit card debt, etc. I think it is a great way to teach responsibility and budgeting!

  • Kim says:

    We do something similar with our 9 and 7 year olds. They have things they are expected to do as a part of the family and then they have paid chores (each $1). We do “Pay Day” once a week. They get out their envelopes, Give, Save, & Spend. First dollar goes in Give, Second dollar goes in Save, and the rest is Spend. This will change if they get over $10 for the week but hasn’t gotten to that point yet. My daughter (9) is really understanding delayed gratification, she has left the store with nothing because she’d rather save up more for what she really wants. This is really amazing to watch.

  • I’ve done the same thing with my three girls for years and it’s been working great. They are at ages now where they need more spending money (16, 15 and 11) so they often ask for extra work- I usually give them jobs like cleaning blinds, washing cars, washing windows, pulling weeds or cleaning out the fridge. When they were younger the jobs were different- more age appropriate. I usually choose things that don’t have to be done on a daily basis, unlike the daily chores which they do not get paid for, they are just part of everyday life as part of a family.

  • Grace says:

    We also implement a unpaid/paid chore sysem. Also in the summer my son has the option to help me clean some of the vacation rentals I manage. (for pay) It has worked out very well although he also comes up to me to pay me for the work I do! But he definately gets the concept that you work, you get paid, you don’t work, you don’t get paid. He’s also got the motivation to save which is nice since he saves most of his money!

  • We are following Dave Ramsey’s suggestions with our kids too. We’ve been doing the “payday” system for about a year with our 7 yr old daughter and 5 yr old son. Our daughter can earn up to $5 a week and our son can earn $3 a week. They get an additional chore and additional chance to earn $1 on every birthday (i.e. when she turns 8, she’ll have 6 chores and can earn $6). They do all their paid chores on Saturday. I remind them that morning and they have until dinnertime to get it done. Sometimes they get done, sometimes not, but it’s their choice. They only get paid for what they do. I have a chore chart on the fridge and they go put a magnet on the chore once it’s complete (and checked by mom).

    This has worked out really well for us. They put their first 10% in the give box for church on Sunday. How much they choose to put in save and spend is up to them and, honestly, they put most of it in save. We have given them savings incentives. We have an upcoming Disney World trip and we told our kids last Oct that they needed to save up spending money for Disney. We told them we would match the first $100 they save. Our daughter has saved $140 towards the trip and our son has saved $100.

    Recently our daughter wanted us to buy her a hamster. We took her to PetSmart and priced everything we would need – cage, bedding, toys, food, water bottle, hamster. Then we told her if she saves half of that ($37) then we would pay the other half and get her a hamster. She only has $5 to go. We hope to instill in them that you save and pay cash before you buy things and that sometimes it takes a while to earn that cash.

  • Leigh Anne says:

    oh your girls are just too cute! i’m going to have to go see what our dollar tree has — never thought to shop there for food, and if they have natures own bread it will for sure have to be a regular stop! i was at the grocery store this evening and saved 74%! the woman behind me was very interested in how to use coupons so i sent her straight to you 🙂 thanks for all you do to help us save money!

  • Teegan says:

    FANTASTIC event to blog Crystal! We bought the DR Jr. kit at the Dave Ramsey KC Live Event and started implementing the commission chart with our 3 year old. We have the paid and unpaid chores… paid chores include helping unload the dishwasher, feeding the dog, eating meals without being asked and keeping her pull-up dry overnight (the last two being HUGE obstacles for our darling!) We switch them weekly based on what she needs to work on and what she would “like to work for this week”. It’s amazing how she completely grasps these lessons at such a young age. I’ve never seen her so proud and excited to take her tithe quarters into Sunday School. What’s even more remarkable is that her 18month old sister is an incredible sponge of these lessons. She will feed the dog BEFORE big sis most mornings, clean up her toys without being asked, put her dirty clothes in the laundry room and LOVES to get dressed in the morning without being asked. haha. I think little ones are under estimated sometimes! 😉 Thank you to everyone who posts their wonderful stories! Blessings!

  • Robbfamily7 says:

    The Dave Ramsey system is great! And this is exactly how we impliment it in our home. My kids are 14-7, with one on the way. They love having spending cash, and I love having a clean house and many helpers. Although, now that they are bigger, they expect a little more cash for their efforts. Of course the jobs are bigger too, but still. The quarter days were much easier on the wallet.

  • Amy Krause says:

    do all dollar trees sell that bread or just certain regions? I guess I haven’t gone into one for quite awhile now. I would if I knew they sold that bread there! anyone know (I live in WI, if that helps)

  • Kellie says:

    I was wondering where they sale the bread here is what i found…It is not in my area 🙁

  • stephanie says:

    BOys: 7 & 10, both have daily unpaid chores as well that are just their responsibility. We use to give an allowance, but found that we had to battle with them more to get chores done, so the allowance stopped. Now they get “paid” for additional chores as well. I totally agree with chores. It teaches them self & family responsibility, participate, being a member of a group, etc. They do have savings jars & they have to save half of the money in their bank. Every month or so we count out their money & they need to put half of that into savings. They then have a certain amount of money they can spend. Sometimes they choose to save towards a larger item, sometimes they choose to spend it right away. This has taught them to be selective in their spending & get the most for their money. We do the same on vacations or trips. We give them x amount of money (depending on vacation size), they add a portion of their money & then they are not constantly begging for things when we go to gift shops, etc. Of course as they learn they make mistakes & discover something was a bad choice, but that is all part of the process.

  • Denise says:

    Your girls are adorable and looking at their faces as they get excited about their purchases warms my heart! We have two in college, one in high school and started with them much the same way you did with your girls. Our two in college work all summer to make their spending money for the year, while my husband and I GAG over the tuition we pay! They know how much it takes to get them through their year and really try hard not to have to ask for more from us…they KNOW how much their tuition is and value their education.
    Enjoy the Dollar Tree with your girls…college won’t be any Dollar Tree trip!!

    • Krysten says:

      Wow! I worked all summer to pay for college tuition! My parents only paid about 1/4 of my tuition during my Jr. and Sr. years when I’d run out of the money that I saved before college. (I couldn’t make quite enough in the summer to cover all of the tuition and room/board.) I could make it through a semester on $50-$100 of spending money (not including books), which included splurges like snacks for my room and an occasional meal out.

      I know that I got more out of college than most of my friends whose parents paid their way because I worked for it myself, and I sure wasn’t about to let all of my money go to waste!

      Not trying to judge or be critical in any way because I know lots of wonderful people who pay their kids’ college bills – it just amazes me that a college student could work all summer for just spending money and “try not” to ask for more!

  • Melissa says:

    I just wrote about this too.

    I have not seen DR’s Jr. version, sounds great. Thanks for sharing!

  • Thanks for all the comments and information! Crystal which type of chores do you have the girls do “paid” and “unpaid”? We have our girls do chores and they are paid for some of them but looking for more ideas!

    The money that our girls earn is separated into four categories – *Charity (Church)

    When we give them their money the first 10% is put into a piggy bank to goes towards their Church Sunday School offering. The remaining money they split however they want to between Giving, Saving, and Spending (and many times they will put extra into charity/church as well). They make the decision on their own how much they want to save for later, give to others, spend however they want to, and give extra to church. It has been neat seeing them growing and maturing over the past few months even.

    I have been considering getting Dave Ramsey’s Jr series for about a month now. Trying to save a little extra to purchase it. How is it?

  • Crown Financial has a giving bank with 3 compartments that we’ve found to be helpful with our children.

  • We use the envelope system with our kids too, we have a 3 & 6 year old but we also have a 16 year old. The new Dave ramsey board game ” Act your Wage” is such a great tool for reaching the teens, they get the concept while playing the game, and your not having to try to force this “cash concept” through just words.

  • Heather says:

    Hope my boys don’t read this 😉 All the chores in our house are “unpaid” – even the extra things like raking, shoveling snow, mowing the lawn, helping to put down the mulch. We tried the allowance system and found out we had better results without paying them?? My boys are now 16, 14, and 11. My 11 year old still thinks money grows on trees. The older two are fairly smart about it.

    • gayatri says:

      Even we don’t pay them money to do their chores That’s works perfectly for us. I don’t treat my kids as workers WE are a Family. We rake leaves as a family, we shovel as a family, we do everything as a family. The money Dad earns is for the family. We talk about the money to them about Mortgage, expenses, vacations everything. We use coupons where ever possible. My kids know that. Both my kids are in Gifted and Talented programs. The other day my son saw the grocery bill of a person in front of us paid $100+, my son said that’s lot of money, he is wasting his money :)))

      Keep up the good work and whatever works for your family.

      • Heather says:

        Yep – we do it as a family – I think that is why it finally worked. The “allowance” was more individual and they weren’t very interested in doing it. Now they see that as a family, we all pick up after ourselves, we all clear and help to set the table, everyone takes turns taking out the trash…….
        That’s funny about your son’s comment on the grocery bill. I could totally see my youngest saying something like that.

      • Mindy says:

        I agree

      • Susan says:

        I hope you’re not encouraging your children to be judgmental of others. I occasionally spend $100 at once. Not every week, but on occasion. If a child in line behind me made a comment about my purchase, I’d hope the parent would take the opportunity to teach that child to have better manners. I would, if the situation was reversed and my child were to say something like that.

  • Michelle says:

    I didn’t realize that Dollar Tree had the Nature’s Own Bread. We don’t have one very close to us, but when I go near there the next time I will have to check it out. I loved that the Dollar Tree when we lived in NY carried Utz Potato chips, they are my hubby’s favorite and they are not cheap chips.

  • Lynn says:

    Flowers has several outlet stores too, usually at the distribution centers though they do have free standing stores …..and bread is .69 cent and up. I know b/c I managed one! * after a holiday you get dinner rolls to throw in the freezer for as low as .10 cent a pack.

  • Missy says:

    Your girls are gorgeous! I love the ideas of some chores for the family and some extras for pay. My parents always had some extra chores I could do to earn money for a new outfit, camp or cheerleading shoes!

  • Kim says:

    Your girls are simply gorgeous. 🙂 This is so encouraging. Some years ago, I implemented a system – to use your words, if Imay- “to teach the value of money and stewardship” to our children as well. Admittedly, at times I’ve grown weary of following through with it on a consistent basis. Just in recent weeks, I’ve felt a tug to continue to go forward. And now I’ve come across this post. So timely. Again – this is so encouraging. Thanks.

    This is off the topic, but your mention of homeschooling the girls peeked my interest. Do you mind sharing what curriculum you use? I’ve heard a lot of good things about the Abeka curriculum. Do you find that you have to be “creative” when trying to keep the attention of your younger daughter?

  • Jolanthe says:

    We follow a similar system ~ some chores unpaid and some are paid. I wrote a post about our kids expected chores, etc…. as well as shared some printables to go along that we’re using:

    I made a preschool version for our 4 year old because it was much easier for him to follow:

    Every family is different, so don’t be discouraged if something doesn’t click with your family! Each of our kids has a different thing that ‘clicks’ with them, so we adapt it as needed!

  • marissa says:

    I noticed that someone was asking for amazon codes on here. If anyone has anymore codes that they don’t need I could REALLY use them as well. GOD BLESS marissa_rostad@hotmail(dot)com

  • Jennifer says:

    I really am so sad that you have to put that disclaimer on the end of so many posts. I know why, it’s just still a little sad to me.

  • Savannah says:

    I really enjoyed reading this post and all the comments! You guys have some awesome ideas! I don’t have children yet, but look forward to implementing some of these learning tools when I do! What a wealth of information 🙂

  • Lisa says:

    I do something similar with my children. I understand what you all are saying about not paying because you want them to understand that this is just the expectation that they are supposed to help but we also want our children to learn how to handle their own money, save up for what they want etc…

    This first came about when my daughter wanted an American Girl doll. There was no way we were ever going to buy her a doll that expensive so we told her she would have to earn the money. She worked for a year to earn that $100 and it was such a great experience to get to take her to Chicago, to go see the store and to pick out her doll. She has since saved enough to buy two more dolls and is close to having another. There is no way we would have bought those for her.

    The litmus test I use to determine whether a chore gets paid or not is is it an “above and beyond” kind of thing? In other words, our kids all have things they are expected to do every day just because it is part of taking care of our home and family. These are things like making their beds, picking up after themselves, clearing the table, putting their laundry away and in general helping whenever I ask with a cheerful attitude.

    I pay for those chores which are harder that involve caring for the whole family-such as washing dishes, mopping floors, scooping poop (because really, who wants to do that?) and babysitting. Also, my kids don’t get paid if they don’t do their chores without complaining or if they don’t do a good job at it-they can be fired, just like a real job. If the problem is their training, I will work with them until they get it right, but if the problem is laziness then they just don’t get paid.

    I will also give extra if they do something really well, if they willingly help out a sibling with something or if they just generally are choosing to be a blessing. I want them to be recognized and rewarded for their hard work-just like they hopefully will be someday in the workforce. I emphasize taking pride in doing a good job and working hard, just because it’s the right thing to do.

    However, these paid chores are not optional-just like going to work and providing for the family is not optional for my husband.

    Another resource we use to help us keep track of it all is One of the hardest parts for me was keeping track of what they had done and how much they had earned and then remembering to get the money to give to them. On this site they keep track of it themselves. They each have separate log-ins and charts that show what they are supposed to do for the day. The parent sets it up in advance and assigns point values to each chore. The points can stand for $ or for reward points that they can cash in for things like late bedtimes, pizza night or whatever you choose. I check it every so often and when they accrue several dollars I pay them or they can choose to use the point for a more tangible reward.

    As far as $, we do 10% to our church, 50% into savings and 40% spending. They can choose to use their spending anyway they want-towards more giving, for gifts at birthday/Christmas time or for a friend or for something they want that we don’t want to buy them. I also have noticed that those things they work and save for, they take better care of-another added bonus!

    • Janet says:

      I love the above and beyond thing for the chores in fact this is what gave me the idea for having this system years ago. I came home one day of summer after a very hard day of work and my kids new that I was struggling and hurting at the time. The 10 year old girl had done all the laundry for the home and folded it and put it away. The boy had clean out the fridg and cleaned the oven the entire kitchen and bath and dust and vac. the house! HOW great is that !

      The next week I started extra chore list for pay !
      IT helped us all !

  • Katy says:

    It does work!!! We have been doing the same spending/saving method with our kids for 10 years. One of my only consistent parenting approaches. When my 14yo daughter had her first outside job last summer she automatically(without my prompting) split it up into the three categories. Saving now for her first car next year!

  • Anne-Marie says:

    I, too, love your idea of mandatory and paid/optional chores and will be implementing that within my family. To add to the discussion: since they were 11 and 15, we have put our children completely in charge of their own clothing budgets. Each child gets $60 / month for that purpose, on top of their age-appropriate weekly allowances. We pay for their necessary toiletries (deodorant, hair care, etc.) and for everything that is required by their schools and their extracurricular activities (i.e., baseball cleats, dance costumes, school project supplies from Hobby Lobby, field trip fees/snacks, etc.). The default arrangement is that they pay for everything else (everyday and holiday clothing, mascara for my daughter, fancy body washes, etc.) The arrangement has not only taught them about money, but, even better, it’s also put a near-stop to them constantly asking for money and extra things on shopping trips.

  • Ashley says:

    It’s good to read a review of Financial Peace, Jr. I have been thinking about getting it as we are Dave Ramsey graduates, but I didn’t know if it would be worth it or not. My kids, the oldest being 8 even though he is familiar with our principals of saving, giving and spending, he has not internalized it with the money he earns. I’ll have to give this a second look, thanks!

  • My parents (who were Financial Peace instructors) recently picked up the Financial Peace Jr. package for my son who is 3 1/2. We haven’t started the whole thing yet, but he loves for me to read him the jr. books at bedtime and listen to the CD’s in the car. I am thrilled with the program so far. And I am sure it will get better as I have more kids and they get a little older.

  • Janet says:

    Not sure if anyone ever wanted to take all of this money thing even to one more level.
    Which could teach Biz skills.

    Let’s say a child has a clean biz at age 12 for a few neighbors who are aging.
    IF they show up with own cleaning supplies then they have Out of Pocket cost and we could teach how expense accounts work and how folks get reimbursed for some expenses in life.

    Just a thought.

  • Michelle says:

    Along with seeing you at the Dave Ramsey event in KC, I was also able to pick up the Financial Peace Junior kit and caboodle in that nice little tote that came with it and added another Junior kit only to it. I have already read 1 of the books because my 6 year old was more about having a book read to him (one of his favorite things ever) than learning about money. I think because up until now, he got money, he went to Wal-Mart. I still have yet to read through the little booklet to figure out how it all works, but your post inspired me to get with it. I will say he loved the banks and so far has on his own put all his pennies in the save bank – lol. Not sure he knows what that means, but it’s a done deal!! LOL – Can’t wait to get started with the 6, 10 and 12 year old. 15 year old got the Teen edition this past Christmas and has very much inspired him. Thanks for the inspiration!!

  • This is great. We led the Dave Ramsey class this past fall into the winter. We have our 10 and 8 year old already saving for a car. They have 4 envelopes because one says CAR FUND.

    We had a ton and I do mean a ton of debt and we are so close to it being gone. The budget helped but cutting up those credit cards helped the more. The debit card is a gift from God and I praise Him that we can finally see light at the end of debt tunnel.

  • Anne says:

    We just started giving DS (age 7) an allowance on his past birthday. Its primary purpose is to allow him to decide what he wants for toys, i.e. does he want a lot of small things, or to save up for larger, more expensive toys. Usually he will save up, but every now and then he’ll get a small thing that really catches his attention. An unexpected benefit is that it gives him incentive to learn to count money (he has trouble with the concept that some “counters” ((i.e coins and bills)) are worth more than others).

    It’s not tied to chores at all. He has some basic chores, but is also expected to help with “specials” like snow shoveling and leaf raking, none of which are paid.

    So far, he hasn’t asked to earn extra money (he still gets $ presents on occasion, especially from his Grandmother). If he did, we’d probably ask for something really extraordinary like washing the car.

  • That’s how we do it too. You must contribute to the family with chores such as clean your room, take recycle to the bin and set the table. Then we have paid chores such as empty the waste baskets. It works well for us

  • Kelly says:

    Am I the only one that has a hard time getting my children to participate in chores? Like most of you, I expect a ‘minimum’ level of participation just for being part of the family – things like picking up their dirty clothes, keeping the bathroom neat, bringing dishes to the sink, not leaving shoes or socks in every room of the house, etc. My DDs (7.5 and 5) act like they’re in a prison camp when I ask them to pick up! They willingly help with chores IF it’s their idea and something they deem ‘fun’ (watering plants, windows, mopping). I do pay $.25 for any chores that are done *without* being asked. BUT, getting them to help with the every day basic stuff is a battle. Unfortunately, my husband is not a good role model in this regard either. Anyway, it’s a constant source of strife in our home and I’ve tried lots of things but it’s not getting better. How are so many of you getting your kids to be compliant and not give you a hard time?

  • claire says:

    I was givev this idea a few weeks ago but have not done it yet. We have 5 boys and 1 daughter and it would do them some good to get paid for extra chores.

    Great find at Dollar Tree! My mom and I have been finding some amazng deals there lately. We got a 3,5 oz package of Fetta for a buck! and Super pretzle bites(a big bag) for a buck! We love it!

  • Becky says:

    DD1.5 and DS3.5 both pitch in. They have to put away their toys, put their dirty laundry in their baskets and both race to help load the washer/dryer. DS also scrapes any scraps from his dinner plate and puts his plate, cup and utensils in the sink. He’s teaching his sister to do the same. DS asked me to buy him a small shovel so he can help me clear the driveway. At this point, they’re enthusiastic to help, and I hope it lasts for at least a little while.

  • Lorie says:

    We started doing this a couple of years ago with our son but, for whatever reason, got out of the habit. He does a decent job of helping when I ask but I’d like to come up with a regular list of chores he needs to do each day. My question is: what chores do you have the girls do because they’re a part of your household and this is what you do to help mom out (to paraphrase how Dave Ramsey says it) and what extra chores can they do to earn money? Thanks!

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