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Ten Financial Pearls, Pay for Studying Not Grades, and Chore Wheels: Weekly Family Finance Picks (#37)

We’re constantly scouring the Internet looking for articles related to family finances and teaching kids good personal finance habits. You can visit the FamZoo delicious page to see our ever growing list of family finance bookmarks. We’re up to 1088 now! Each week, we pick our favorite articles from the previous week and post them here.

The picks for this week are:

Ten Pearls of Financial Wisdom From Dad

10 Things I Want My Kids to Learn About Money Before They’re Adults

Sadly, Jason lost his mom and his grandfather last year. That’s got him thinking deeply about the legacy he’d like to leave for his kids. With that backdrop, he offers 10 heartfelt (and concise) pearls of financial wisdom for kids as they prepare for the real world. I love every one of them. How do they match up with what you’d like to pass along to your kids? See Jason’s list here.

Should We Pay Kids To Study?

by Baldur Hedinsson and Jacob Goldstein on NPR Planet Money

Here’s a topic that always gets folks riled up: paying kids for grades. Several past studies have shown that paying for the end result (a good grade), does not improve performance. But a recent study out of Harvard looked at a different angle on grades and incentives: paying kids to do the things that lead to the result - like reading, studying, and attending class - rather than paying for the result itself. This approach, it turns out, is effective.

Of course, there’s lots of howling in the comments. Paying kids for what should be considered a privilege and a golden opportunity just feels wrong in many ways. That said, I found it interesting that the student effectiveness persisted even after the paying stopped. The implication? Instilling the habit might be the key. Perhaps it’s worth it.

Check out the NPR recap of the study here, and see what you think.

Get Your Kids to Work! Chore Chart for Multiple Children

by Julie Meyer on How Does She?

I knew I was going to like Julie’s post as soon as I saw the lead in quote from Thomas A. Edison:

We often miss opportunity because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.

I love that one.

Julie provides some great commentary on the big picture of why we as parents should train our kids to work. She follows up with some very practical tips for parents to make good on what can prove to be a daunting, thankless, and seemingly futile task. I love her practical tools, her infraction system, and her philosophy of balancing between structure and variety.

I think this post will help you keep up the good fight. And, despite the title, it’s helpful even if you have just one child. Read it here.

To cap things off this week, a little bonus video: I liked this two minute local news segment on the benefits of an allowance. It describes three different types of allowance: educational, entitlement, and earned. I hadn’t heard those handy labels before. What type of allowance do you give? Check it out:


Suzanne @ GrowingRich Kids aka The Blog Post Author

Really enjoyed the article by Julie Meyer on chores. My mother says she made the mistake of just doing the chores herself as it was quicker. And my siblings and I were not that helpful around the house for her and Dad. I'm learning from my husband, who is excellent at training our boys on chores and self care, all with the goal of having them be self sufficient and also able to pull their weight around the house.

As for allowances, I'm still figuring out how to evolve our current approach. Think we've already ruled out "entitlement" though!


Bill Dwight aka The Blog Post Author

Thanks for the comment Suzanne. As the Dad to several jaded teens, I could really relate to the part in Julie's article where she said: "My older kids cynically jest with each other, “I wonder how long this one’s going to last.” But the fact is, they have been doing some type of regular chores for their whole life. So really I have the last laugh."

So true - and they'll thank her down the road too. We're already starting to hear that from our two college age kids. It makes all the effort well worth it!

Bill Dwight aka The Blog Post Author

BTW, if you like Edison's quote like I do and want to share it with family members when in FamZoo, here's how you do that:

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