"If you are too lazy to plow,
Don’t expect a harvest.” - Proverbs 20:4
Since the moment our boys arrived my husband has taught them to work. As little boys they would work alongside dad in the yard…raking, pulling weeds…eventually “graduating” to the mower and the weed eater.
Now, as older boys, they are very much into their power tools! He always wanted our boys to feel competent in any situation, be able to handle the stress of life, and have everyday skills (that so many teens lack!). This meant being intentional and patient. It’s much easier to fix the fence yourself rather than teaching a 10- year- old how to use tools.
Oh, there were times, as I watched from my kitchen window, I was sure that my husband would lose complete control. But with God’s grace my boys survived!
We have done the same with our girls. Elizabeth has helped build a chicken coop and can organize our mountains of laundry while running a tight ship while I'm at work. I truly believe that Kyrsten is the fabulous cook she is today because we handed her a cook book and said "go for it".
As teens they were both responsible to do our family grocery shopping while sticking to a budget...no easy task with this large tribe! I have compete confidence that either could easily step up and resume my roll if needed (let's hope not!).
We see the value in requiring our teens to get part time jobs, do daily chores, and learn to save their own money. The life time benefits and skills that are obtained in a simple part time job are priceless! Let’s explore some reasons why teens should get a part time job:
1. Work provides a constructive use of free time for teens
I completely understand the theory of a “summer break,” but I find that teens left to themselves will only get into mischief…or play video games ALL day. Neither of which will help them gain future employment.
2. Teens build work experience for their futures
Believe it or not, the workforce today looks favorably on work experience along with an education. When a teen can prove that he is able to work while in school it allows them to build a resume while learning to balance school, work, and social life. This makes a good impression for future employers.
3. Teens can establish connections at their jobs
While working a part time job your teen can establish contact with adult employers who can later be used as references. Our teens have asked their supervisors for letters of recommendations for scholarships, summer youth programs, and other part time work.
4. Teens can contribute to their college education
With our large family is it not possible to pay for all of their college expenses. Our kids have to work, save money, learn to buy or rent used college textbooks, and carpool with each other to save on gas expenses. Currently, Elizabeth is saving to attend a semester in Ireland!
5. Teens learn the importance of balance
When working a part time job, trying to write a literature essay, study for an exam, attend worship team practice, and grab a movie with friends you quickly learn to prioritize your time. This is a life skill!
6. Teens learn a lesson in finances!
We feel it’s important to teach our teens how to budget, save, and spend wisely. There is no better way to learn a lesson on finances than having to get up early in the morning and work hard for those expensive shoes. I guarantee they will make sure the dog doesn’t eat them! Spending your own money makes you think twice before hitting the local fast food joint. My boys wake up early enough to pack their own lunch.
7. Teens learn the value of a saved dollar
All of our teens have purchased their own vehicles by working and saving their money. We think it gives them a real sense of accomplishment. They are always so proud of themselves when they buy their first vehicle with cash.
Our teens have become more confident, increased their social interaction skills with all ages, and can problem solve with ease-all because of a part time job.
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How do you teach your children about financial responsibility? Let me know in the comment section below!
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