This chore chart is really working for us right now with our kids. It’s Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace for kids and it’s awesome!
I realize the side of our refrigerator looks like a junked up locker and it’s just missing a disco ball or chandelier hanging but hey it’s how we roll these days. You should see the front. It’s really scary with piles of handouts describing the latest project, next field trip and derby car specs for Awana and Scouts.
But the chore chart you see comes in a kit you can order for only $20.00 (I get no kickbacks for saying that). You get a ton of stuff with it. Like these really cool plastic envelopes and handy dandy calculator and much more:
You figure out what chores your kids will do that receive “commissions” (pay) and how much you want to pay out for them. Ramsey is big on some chores you do for no pay because you’re part of the family. But the chores you pay commissions for you list on the dry erase board. At the end of the week you pay them for the chores they did and then they put 10% in their “Give” envelope and 10% in their “Save” and the rest in “Spend”. The calculator helps them figure out how much 10% is or whatever percent you decide on. We are viewing the “Savings” category a little differently than Ramsey suggests. We aren’t allowing our kids to touch their Savings until they are out of college – it’s for starting up a home, car, etc. But their “Spend” money is for whatever they want to spend it on (within reason). I love how there’s a clip at the bottom of the chore board so they can post a picture of what they’re saving for. Sophie is saving up for two things. A trip to The American Girl store with some friends in a few weeks and also a bike. She chose to put a picture of a bike on her chart. Mitchell changes his mind every day on what he wants to spend his money on so he has no picture there.
We’ve enforced this concept for years – tithing and saving. But we have never paid our kids for chores before. This has really opened up the door for them to understand money better. A light bulb went off in Mitchell’s head last week when talking about saving money. This system has brought a new awareness to managing and saving money. We are cheap parents and only give the opportunity for the kids to earn a max of $5.00 a week but that’s all we can do right now. We’re adding a budget amount of $40 a month to pay our kids for chores and we’ve never done that before. We hope to see that increase with time but it’s a start for now. They love seeing their money grow every week. So far they’ve not earned the entire $5 because either they have forgotten to mark their chore even though they did it (I’m a stickler with this right now – if they don’t mark it they don’t paid for it. Think about it…in the real world if you don’t punch your time card you don’t get paid for your work) And if they forget to do one of their chores they don’t get paid of course. They also can’t make up chores from the day before. Call me hard nosed but this week they are really working hard for the whole $5 (which translates into $4 net pay after they give and save).
We started out with really simple chores – I mean really simple.
Brush Teeth, Get Dressed, Make Bed, Take out Trash, Clean Window, Feed the dog, etc……. We pay .10 a chore (I know…please don’t tell them it’s slave labor) and only one chore gets them more. They each clean the the bathrooms once a week and we pay $1.00 for that chore. We kind of had to figure out a way to make the money work at the end of the week to make it affordable for us and easy to make change, etc. Best way is to get a bunch of ones and quarters/dimes from the bank to pay out a month at a time so you’re not scrambling every week.
We’re still learning ourselves. I see us changing this up a bit this summer. Adding more chores that require more work. I mean really…..you get paid to “Get dressed”?! What’s the alternative…..to go naked for a day? Okay, I just thought about both my kids and now I remember why I put that one down there.
I hope this might be helpful for you and your family. What a great thing to train our kids early in the biblical practice of giving to God and managing money well. They will thank us one day for not buying them everything they wanted and instead taught them how to practice restraint and discipline to save.