Kids pick up on money management at an extremely young age. That’s why allowing your child to earn her own money and spend her own money can be one of the greatest financial gifts you can give.
Take my six year old daughter for example. She has been saving every dollar she’s earned for more than a year. She was near $150 last month and decided it was time to go and buy an American Girl Doll bed. (The knock-off kind from Target, of course.) That’s the item that she had been saving for all along so I took her to Target to let her spend her money.
When we got there she meticulously looked over every item of interest comparing prices and adding up costs. Everything must’ve been too rich for her blood because she walked out of the store with nothing but a new sheet set!
She decided that she didn’t want to spend her money. That she wanted to keep saving until she finds something that she really, really wants. (She thinks she’s going to fund a trip to Disney World now!)
Suffice it to say I was a proud mama!
I’m extremely glad that she’s had to work (in an age appropriate manner) to earn her own money which has made it hard for her to impulsively spend it. I consider her to be better at managing money than half of the adults I know.
If you’re looking for a way for your own child to earn a little extra cash and learn the value of a dollar here are ten ways for kids to make money.
1. Extra Chores
Most appropriate for young children is extra household chores. This could be cleaning an extra room, doing laundry, sweeping and mopping the floors, organizing, or dusting.
As kids get older, the chores can be more complex or complicated as well.
As long as you assign age appropriate work extra chores will always be a great way for kids to earn money.
2. Lemonade Stand
I was pleased last year to see so many children running lemonade stands while their parents were having yard sales.
This is a time tested way for children to make money.
If a lemonade stand doesn't work for your area, some variations include popcorn stand, shaved iced, or even cookies!
3. Mowing Lawns
Mowing the lawns of neighbors and family members is great for any kid who likes to do yard work and is old enough to operate a mower.
Don't just think about the lawn! Trimming hedges, weeding, and other gardening tasks are all appropriate ways to help kids earn extra money.
4. Shoveling Snow
Shoveling snow is something most kids can do, can be fun for them, and is in high demand during the wintery months.
I for one wouldn’t be able to turn down a child offering to shovel my driveway. This can also be a very lucrative way for kids to make money.
5. Walk Dogs
My kids are complete animal lovers. For them walking dogs would be something they’d do for fun so getting paid for it would just be an added bonus.
It's also important to realize that there are apps that can help with this now. Granted, a parent needs to sign up and use the app, but the child can definitely be involved in the making money process.
6. Babysit Younger Kids/ Become a Mom’s Helper
If you have an older child looking to make money, babysitting younger children or simply helping a parent is an easy way to make some cash.
This is another area that children can earn more as they get older. When they're young, mom's helper is a big one. But as they become young teenagers, babysitting younger neighbors or friends' children can be great ways to earn extra money.
7. Have a Bake Sale
Do you have a little baker? Let her put a booth up at a farmers market or even outside of your house and earn some money off of her creations.
We recently had a neighbor do this and advertised it to her classmates and their families. She prepped for a week with cookies, brownies, and even crafts. Overall, the sale was a huge success!
8. Coordinate Garage Sales
Do you have a future event planner? Let him coordinate garage sales for the part of the profit. He could do this for you and family members.
Plus, garage sales are a great way to teach your children how to resell their own stuff. There's a lot of value in old children's games, activities, and play sets. If your child doesn't play with something anymore, encourage them to sell it at the garage sale and make some extra money.
Recycling is one of the absolute easiest ways to earn some extra money. Sure, recycling won’t make your kid rich but it will teach her the value in taking care of the planet.
Over the year, my kids end up making about $100 recycling cans and bottles just from our house alone!
10. Wash Cars
And last, but not least, let your children have a car wash in the summer. This can be another fun money making activity for kids.
Even little ones can help wash cars by cleaning the tires, cleaning the inside, and more. Just make sure you show them how to do it right!
Let Them Try
Most adults I know are more than happy to support a child who is willing to work hard and try to make money. I know I personally wouldn’t turn down a lemonade stand, bake sale, car wash, or snow shoveling service if offered by a kid.
So if you have a little entrepreneur on your hands let them try their best at earning their own money.
When a child has a chance to earn and manage money they’ll develop skills that will stick with them for a lifetime!
Alexa Mason is a freelance writer and wanna be internet entrepreneur. She is also a newly single mom to two beautiful little girls. She chronicles her journey as a single mom trying to make it big at www.singlemomsincome.com.