Allowances And Welfare

Published: Wednesday, 06/15/2005 12:00 am EDT

RE: "Do Kids' Allowances Lead To Welfare?" (Embassy, June 1).There are allowances and there are allowances. At our parent education center and at most Adlerian parent education programs in Canada and the U.S., we teach parents to use allowances to teach responsibility. However, we don't tie allowance to chores. Chores are done by everyone in the family because that's what it takes to make a family run smoothly. Parents are not paid to wash the dishes and children shouldn't be either. Allowance grows with age to include more and more responsibilities -- lunch money, haircuts, books, school supplies, clothing. Children are trained to use a checking account and a savings account, and to plan their charitable giving. One of the most important parts of this type of allowance is that children learn from the consequences of their spending mistakes because parents are taught at our centres not to "undo" the learning by rescuing their children from those mistakes. We find children trained in this method are wise decision makers about money.

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