(Click to begin our Money Management for Children series.)
You have probably seen these clever ideas on Pinterest. Ideas to help moms spend a couple of hours of their time to make a cute box or bag to help children develop responsibility. Some call them ransom buckets, pick-a-chore boxes, or even “Gunny” the toy-eating gunnysack. The point behind this phenomenon is that anything left out is collected and the child must pay a due to get it back.
I hate to break it to you. This Pinterest pinning crazy is nothing new. Moms have used this idea for generations. The difference is that in the 21st century mommas feel the need to make it fancy or cute.
I’ll be honest. I love the cute sayings and the beautiful tots, crates, and bags, but being cute isn’t going to help my child pick up his stuff. Me picking it up and making him earn the item back time will. So, in our home, I use a box. A plain old, cardboard box.
Whenever something is left out – clothing, toy, water bottle, shoes, etc – I collect it in the box. The child must pay me $0.25 from his spending money to get the object back. If the object is left in the box too long, the child must pay $0.50. If the item continually ends up in the box, it will be moved to the attic for safe keeping.
Let’s give you a scenario.
Sweet Pea likes to put her shoes by the back door. Interestingly enough, if she would turn 180 degrees, she would be facing her shoe box. One particular pair of shoes that I collected were her soccer cleats. Of course soccer practice rolled around and she didn’t have shoes. Lucky for her, she keeps excess in her spending drawer and was able to easily purchase the shoes back.
What if she hadn’t had the money?
1) She would have had to do an extra chore.
2) She would have had to wear other shoes to soccer practice and would have had to explain to her coach why she wasn’t prepared for soccer. (In her case, not going to soccer practice wouldn’t be an option because she made a commitment to her team.)
One thing that I have learned to help my children be successful is to minimize the stuff in our home. Crammed drawers and closets do not help them put things away. Also, I have to train them to know where everything goes. Currently, I am purging whatever extras I can find to free up space and make it easier for them to be successful.
Donating the extras is another way to train our children about giving.
I’ve thrown a lot at your this week. I hope that you can clearly understand the Quarter Coaching Program and can see ways to implement it yourself. Remember that on Monday I will be answering your questions so please be sure to leave any points in which you are questioning.
Have a great Memorial Weekend!