How can I teach entrepreneurship to a toddler

Learning responsibility with Ämtli?

Watering the flowers, doing the dishes, washing the car - there are many opportunities for Children to help out in everyday family life. But they should rewarded for it become?

Text: Kathrin Wehrli
Images: Liam Norris / Getty Images, iStockphoto

In collaboration with Credit Suisse

Financial rewards are a double-edged sword: On the one hand, they can motivate children to take on tasks that they do not like to do. On the other hand, it can create false incentives. In the remuneration of offices and tasks is therefore a careful consideration asked.

Making the bed, clearing out the dishwasher or setting the table - parents can easily pass such little tasks on to children, says child and adolescent psychologist Sabine Brunner. "It often takes a little longer than doing the work yourself, but it not only teaches children how to do household chores, but also how to take on responsibility." Your tip: Everyone should be responsible for something. This creates the basic mood that every family member contributes something to the community.

When does compensation make sense?

Of course, it is important to adapt the Ämtli to the age: for example, the little ones can empty the paper buckets, the older ones can prepare a simple meal. A 6-year-old child understands that the younger sister is given an easier task.

These everyday affairs Sabine Brunner advises against paying remuneration: “Money is a bad currency in the family. In daily tasks like washing up or tidying up, helpfulness and trust count. They are part of common family life without any money being paid for them. Children should take everyday tasks for granted. "

But what if the child is not in the mood for his office? Here Sabine Brunner recommends looking for the reason for the Ämtli reluctance together with the child and, if necessary, considering whether there is another activity that they prefer to do. After all, officials should be neither a means of power nor a punishment.

Are there special tasks like Parents can give their children a few francs for raking leaves in the garden or clearing out the garage. This motivates and shows the child that it is a special task. In the ideal case, however, such additional tasks are voluntary, so that the child can also decide against having them done and thus against being paid, says Sabine Brunner.

A financial reward can undermine original motivation.

But you always have to weigh up when a little nod makes sense and when it doesn't. Because helping is often even fun: If a child simply enjoys helping their grandparents with gardening, a financial reward would not be beneficial - on the contrary: It could undermine the original motivation “I want to do something for grandparents and grandparents” and cause that Child either no longer helps or only asks in the future: "What will I get for it?" The family should therefore look carefully at when financial incentives make sense. Of course, there is nothing to prevent the grandparents from thanking them for their help, for example by visiting the zoo together.

When do children want to start earning money for the first time?

It is a different matter when children consciously say: "I want to earn extra money." This happens around the age of ten. This «Small-scale entrepreneurship» is an important step: the child understands that they can do something themselves to fulfill their wishes. Parents should support initiative. That is why Sabine Brunner advocates paying a special job every now and then: Mama's car needs to be washed or the basement finally needs to be tidied up? This is a good opportunity for children to help out of their daily duties and to earn something. According to the Labor Act and the Youth Labor Protection Act, you can Young people from the age of 13 also take on small part-time jobs or vacation jobs.

Children should always have time for school, friends and free time.

Ultimately, however, it is important that neither office nor part-time or holiday jobs in the center standing and the children have time to concentrate on friends, school and relaxing free time.

Which offices at which age?

Ämtli should Match the age of the child and not too demanding, but not too demanding either.

  • Nice with two years children have fun doing small tasks such as clearing the dishwasher together.
  • With three years you can empty wastebasket, dust furniture, water flowers and tidy up your toys.
  • From about six years Children can load and unload the dishwasher themselves, wipe the table, put away their purchases or fold laundry.
  • From twelve years ironing is no problem, children can also do their own shopping or prepare a simple meal.

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Viva Kids World

Parents can find advice, tips and tricks for financial education in the Viva Kids World. Children discover financial topics together with the Viva Kids gang.

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