How, how much and when how should we pay the children?Many parents see themselves or have seen themselves in this dilemma and have considerable doubts about whether or not to give the famous 'Sunday pay' to their children; What's more, there are some who even consider 'paying' their children to help with housework, help out at home, and even pass exams! Is this correct? What we must never forget in any case is that hepay must teach children to use money responsibly.
Of course children must be strengthened so that they feel more secure and motivated in adopting the behaviors we want to establish, that at first may cost them more or that are heavier, such as helping at home by setting and removing the table, making their bed in the morning, but that does not imply at all that such reinforcement must be economical.
In fact, When children are young, their main reinforcement is the approval of their parents. Just give them a big hug, congratulations or tell them how proud we are because they are helping at home. When they are a little older, in addition to continuing to reinforce them, you can add small privileges associated with fulfilling their tasks, such as using the computer, playing with the console ...
Children have to learn the importance of collaborating at home and working as a team, And, also, when they are little, they like the fact of feeling older and being able to carry out those tasks. Well planned, for example, setting the table can be fun, and it is something they can learn from a young age. That is why parents have to be clear about some concepts:
- It is not necessary to give them money for each of the activities with which they collaborate at hometo or because they make an effort in their tasks. They have to learn that it is something that has to be done, and that for it they will get our approval and our attention.
- Social reinforcement is more effective than economic.
- The idea to convey is that we all live at home, and, therefore, collaborating in it is a team task; that's why we don't have to 'pay' the children.
- Is about foster team spirit.
The advantage that money can have is that at first it can motivate them to carry out this task, but the effect wears off very quickly, and in the event that we find ourselves with a child or a more rebellious adolescent or with certain difficulties , it will not matter to him that he is paid to carry out the ordered; most likely you will stop doing it and you will not care about the money. It will always be more effective to use other reinforcements with children, like praise for the effort of helping around the house and doing their homework, or playing with them for a while, watching a movie, or going to the cinema.
Another different thing is the assignment of a tip or weekly pay. When they are somewhat older, it is convenient to set a weekly amount that they must administer for when they meet their friends, or to buy their sweets. They will earn this pay with their behavior for the week, obeying the reference adults, doing their homework and collaborating with the housework.
In the face of extra efforts, we will not give them money. You always have to look at how much money is given to a child, and try to make it appropriate for their needs. For example, if you are going to the cinema with friends, it is enough that you bring the entrance fee and just enough for the popcorn, in the event that we have agreed that you can buy it.
Adolescents can be assigned a pay per week that they administer, and that we see appropriate, but beware, a child or a teenager with a lot of money in his pocket is easier to get into trouble.
- It is important that we instill in him the importance of effort, and that he sees that said pay must be earned with the correct behavior during the week, and that this has been agreed with him or her.
- When you choose to 'finance' adolescents on demand, they do not learn to distribute their expenses according to their income, they do not have a real perception of what they spend, and this is a fundamental learning for adult life.
Another important aspect with children and adolescents, and more so in these times, is that they learn to give importance to the value of money. For that, it is essential that they see how the adult manages it. We have already commented that the main source of learning for a child is modeling, and that is why adults have to be the first to give value to money in front of the child.
No matter how good economic situation we enjoy, it is not convenient to waste, or satisfy all the wishes of the child, even if they are permissible, because if we do so, it will be the parents themselves who will be preventing them from being aware of the value of money and what it costs to earn it.
The pay will help them because it will allow them to make decisions about what to spend it on and why, and assume that the money must be earned. For this, it will be essential that parents stand firm and do not give them more if they ran out of money, because, in this way:
- They do not learn to manage money correctly.
- We teach them to live beyond their means.
- We do not encourage them to learn to say, for example: 'I cannot afford to buy a certain game, or go to the movies this week'.
We can be very sad when our child tells us that he is the only one who does not have a certain object or the only one who doesn't go on an excursion with the others. But let's face it, there are sure to be a lot of other kids in your situation, and they also have to learn to cope with their frustrations, because in life you can't do everything you would like to do, and the sooner you learn it the better.
It is about valuing what you have, to fight for what you want to achieve, and not to get frustrated by what you don't have or don't get.
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