Good work ethic is a must-have life skill that begins at home, preferably from a young age. When children are younger, their minds are little sponges that soak up what you teach them with vigor and excitement. Ergo, those life lessons are likely to stick when you give them a reason to build on their skills.
This article should be a source of inspiration on how you can instill your kids with a good work ethic from a young age.
Teach Children About Incentives and Consequences
Children have a knack for picking up new responsibilities when they have something to work towards. Enter an incentives board. Together, make a list of what your child would like to receive for doing weekly chores around the house. Research which chores are age-appropriate beforehand and discuss it with your kiddo—kind of like a briefing for a job. “If you do this and this, then you get this and this.”
Create a Model of Chores in a Job-Style System that Offers Bi-Weekly Rewards (to represent paychecks)
When you go to work, you are doing so to get a paycheck at the end of every week or every other week. This work-and-pay model could be used for children and their chores. Create a chart that details the chores you’ve both discussed, then right the goals at the end of each week.
For example, if your 13-year-old vacuums the living room once, dusts the furniture twice, and cleans the litter boxes every day, then they get a special trip to their favorite frozen yogurt shop on the weekend.
Tip: Use transcription headsets when you’re creating the charts. It will help you remember your own ideas about age-appropriate responsibilities to give your kiddo.
Talk About What It Means to Work Smart, Save Money, and Take Pride in a Job Well Done
Another approach to the chores chart is to use actual money as the incentive. Kind of like the old days of allowances.
Children learn to work smarter by coming up with methods to finish their chores in record time (because most kids just want to be done). And they earn money, which you can suggest saving 30% of in a piggy bank for a rainy day. Accomplishing chores and what you expect of them will teach them how to take pride in a doing a good job.
Tip: Perform chores with your children, like a coworker, until they get the hang of having new responsibilities.