Pocket Money Tips

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Pocket money can be introduced once a child is able to talk.  Both pocket money and responsibility should be increased as the child gets older. As an example, a four year old could earn R1.50 by doing simple chores. A five year old could earn R3 by doing more complex chores.  A six year old could earn R5 or more.  Just remember that greater responsibility must come with increases in pocket money. Chores can include taking a plate back to the kitchen for the toddlers to more difficult chores such as cleaning up dog poo, feeding and giving water to the animals, loading and unloading the dishwasher, setting and taking off from the table. You can place a value on each chore but they shouldn’t be allowed to earn too much. Initially, especially if the children are pre-teen, pay them daily after supper. As you become more familiar with the system you can then pay them weekly. Never pay them monthly as they will find it almost impossible to budget for the month.

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Buy them a wallet or money box where they can keep their hard earned cash. Money boxes or wallets should be provided for all unspent money, which then can be saved.  This helps children learn to manage money.

Ensure that when you go out shopping or to a restaurant with the children that they bring their pocket money. This means if they see something that they want and they have enough money they can buy it. If they don’t have enough means that they will just have to save harder in order to have enough money for the next time you go shopping. It also means that when you go out to a child friendly restaurant, their pocket money can be used to buy a toy meal or a toy from a dispensing machine. This will avoid all nagging. Also, if you choose to go to a movie with the children, you pay for the tickets and popcorn but they will have to pay for a Coke if they so wish.

Your child can also earn R3 per day for making their own lunch. If they want to buy from the school tuck shop that money comes from the own hard-earned money.

Chores must not be confused with duties, as duties are not negotiable. Duties are responsibilities that children must do, such as cleaning their rooms, not leaving things lying around, bathing, and brushing teeth.

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