This post was sponsored by COUNTRY Financial® as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
In the latest COUNTRY Financial®Security Index, which measures how American’s feel about their personal financial security, and other topics that revolve around their personal finances, they studied what people thought about teaching their children about finances through the use of chores and allowance. While looking through the data, they decided to do something to help!
One of the best things I ever did as a mom was delegate a ton of “my” chores over to my kids. Not only does it free me up to get stuff done I really should be working on, but it teaches them a ton about work ethic, and the way I do it also teaches them about working for what you want. There really are so many things that kids can do on their own. Both of my kids (ages 7 and 11) do their own laundry. They each have a basket in their room and are required to bring it down, wash it, dry it, and put it away. You absolutely don’t need to deal with a mountain of laundry every week! I still have quite a bit of laundry with mine and my husband’s clothes, towels and bedding, but the kids have to do their own towels and bedding too. These are important skills that kids need to learn! My kids have asked me in the past why they have to do chores and pay for things themselves, and I always tell them that my responsibility as a parent is to teach them how to be adults and do things for themselves, because they won’t always live with me.
For someone as tech savvy as I am, I actually have paper checklists in our home for our kids. I know! GASP! I HATE paper! How could I let this happen! The truth is, I just couldn’t find a chore app that I liked as well as my checklists that I created. I’ve tried most of them, which is why I am excited to check out COUNTRY Financial® ChorePal App, after I’ve had some time to play with it, I’ll let you know if it lives up to my very high expectations of a chore app. COUNTRY Financial® developed the ChorePal app as a way for families to digitally manage household chores and rewards. They wanted to help parents teach their kids the value of hard work and saving in a super fun and simple way.
To set up for the chore app review coming later, let me first explain how chores/money are handled in our house right now. Here are the checklists they currently use…
At the start of every school year, and the start of the summer, I re-evaluate their checklists and print off new ones if necessary. These checklists are then laminated (which I take care of at the local FedEx store) and they use a wet erase marker to check it off throughout the week. Here is a great list of age appropriate chores for kids!
If they complete their checklist, they earn $5.00 for the week. I give it to them in four 1 dollar bills, and four quarters. If they do NOT complete their checklist by the end of the week, they will not get paid. This way it’s easy for them to split into their different containers. I purchased disinfectant wipe containers and some duct tape. I’m extremely un-crafty. I had them wrap each of their containers in the duct tape and then label the top of the containers Spending, Saving, and Tithing. They put 50 cents in Tithing (which is 10% of their 5 dollars), 1 dollar in their savings (20%), and then $3.50 goes into their spending jar. They are expected to buy anything they WANT to have. Mom and Dad still give them gifts at Christmas and their Birthday, and will take care of the things they need (food and shelter obviously, but also sports fees and clothes and what not). When we go to the store, I am NEVER asked if they can have something. They know now that the answer never changes… “do you have any money for it?” if they didn’t bring their money, or they don’t have enough, they don’t get it. It’s really as simple as that. The key to teaching them how to appreciate the value of their money is to NEVER give in at the store. Anything they want, they need to pay for by themselves.
Here’s the main problem, kids notoriously have a hole in their pocket. The second they get some money, they want to head to the store and see what they can buy. You try to tell them, hey maybe you should save for something BIGGER! Then they end up with a 1 dollar slinky that breaks the next day. So, how do you get them to think bigger? What I do is sit with my kids and browse through various websites to try and find a toy or item that they REALLY want. We have also been known to do this at the store (searching for the thing they are going to start saving for). Then we print out a picture of that item and put it either above their chore checklist, or wrap it around their spending canister. When they can actually visualize their goal, it makes it so much more motivating. Trying to convince them of something “better” in the moment, when you don’t have a specific thing in mind can easily be overlooked for the shiny thing in front of them NOW.
Right now my daughter is saving for Pokemon Moon, a DS game that will be released next month. She has been SO excited for this game. She even made some calculations several months ago to make sure that by the time it was released she will have saved enough money!
I will tell you right now, that when they buy things with their own money, that they worked for, they appreciate the things they have SO MUCH more than the things you just buy for them. COUNTRY Financial® is a full-service insurance and financial services company, and are very invested in their client’s personal finances to help them achieve their goals too. Definitely go check out the app to see if it can help YOUR family reach personal and financial goals too! I’m setting mine up right now…
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Sarah Kimmel has spent the last 16 years of her career as an IT Manager supporting over 100 small businesses. During that time she started Family Tech to help families understand and manage the technology in their home. She has regularly appeared as a tech expert on KSL News, BYUtv and Studio 5, and has been invited all over the world from tech companies like Lenovo, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, and Samsung. Find out more on her website SarahKimmel.com