A controversial topic if ever there was one; how much do you give, do you give it at all and what do you give it for?  One thing’s for sure, there’s no right or wrong answer; it’s what you choose to do as a family.

If it’s a bit of a dilemma in your family, here’s some guidance to help you make the decision that works for you.

Chores

According to Julie Lythcott-Haims, former dean of freshmen at Stanford University and author of How to Raise an Adult, children that do chores are better prepared for adulthood and ultimately become better employees.  If children have everything done for them, they lose the value of having to do things for themselves.  Therefore, when they finally move out or start their first job, the reality that there isn’t a washing fairy can leave them somewhat overcome.

We’re not saying sit back and have a cup of tea while the kids take over the running of the house. But set them clear chores that they have to complete each week.  If they do so and to a good standard, then they can receive an agreed reward, which could be pocket money or gift or a special outing.

How much is too much

This varies from household to household, but according to an article in The Guardian, children under five receive an average of £2 a week, which then steps up to £9.50 a week when they hit 15+.

The same article reveals the startling fact on average, girls receive 80p less than boys!

Most parents surveyed agree that their children receive their pocket money for doing chores.  You can read more from the survey here.

How it is paid?

This is probably the biggest change from how we received our pennies when we were children.  With the introduction of pre-loaded cards like Go Henry, many parents are choosing to manage their child’s spending digitally, by topping up their pre-paid card with cash.

Apps allow parents to control their child’s spending and allow them to monitor what they’re spending their cash on.  This has its plusses and minuses.  At many schools, money isn’t even included in the maths curriculum anymore. So if they have no access to pounds and pence outside school, children could grow up believing the tooth fairy carries ApplePay and deposits money onto their card or into their digital bank, rather than leaving coins under a pillow.

There’s also something to be said for the experience of having actual money in their hand and understanding that, once it’s gone, it’s gone!  It also helps with arithmetic, which is never a bad thing!