- Dog walking for neighbors. Many people work during the day and they would LOVE the opportunity to have their precious pups get outside and enjoy the sunshine. Kids enjoy being outside, getting some exercise, and earning some extra money at the same time!
- Consignment shop sales. Have your children collect items around the house that they no longer want or need and bring them to your local consignment shop. I have done this a couple of times with my girls and they love it. Yes, in most cases it was my money that was invested in the initial purchase of the items, but I allow them to earn the profit from the re-sale if they do the work of sorting and cleaning the items to prepare them for purchase. It gives them great joy to find that our unwanted items can be someone else’s treasure! This activity is also a great lesson in the value of goods and the importance of reusing and recycling!
- Lemonade stand. This is an obvious one, but a lemonade stand is still worth mentioning. If you are having a garage sale or another outdoor event in your neighborhood, a lemonade (and baked goods) stand could become a great learning experience in running a small business. Help your kids create a budget to determine what they are planning to spend to get started versus what they expect to sell. Encourage them to purchase the supplies on their own with their earned money from other activities, or borrow the money on loan from mom and dad and pay you back. Then teach them about advertising, customer relations, quality control, and accounting – there are so many things children can learn about entrepreneurship from a simple lemonade stand!
- Weeding and leaf collection. Let’s face it, some people love to garden and others don’t. I am the latter. However, I sure enjoy looking at the end outcome of a perfectly manicured flower garden. I am not above having my children (well, my 7-year-old) weed my flower gardens for a few bucks. It’s worth it to my back for sure! Take it one step further, and when fall hits, have your kids help with leaf clean up. A penny per leaf makes them feel rich!
- Help an elderly neighbor or relative. Summer is also a great time to teach kids about charity and helping others. Do things for the elderly that they would have trouble doing for themselves. Kids can pick up sticks in a yard, wash windows, weed or plant flowers in a garden, or do a variety of other odd jobs depending on their age. I often add a dollar or two to my kids’ allowance for their charitable acts, but you may decide that it’s more important to teach them to give without any reward. Earning money is a wonderful thing to teach kids, but there is nothing more precious or priceless than an act of selflessness by your child!
A great book that relates to this matter is The Blessings Jar. While this book is definitely for the younger kids, I really feel that teaching your kids thankfulness is so incredibly important. . . especially when talking about money. It’s a hard concept to teach, so if there are any good resources out there, I’m all ears!
I hope these tips help you and your kids have some fun this summer and earn some extra money along the way! So. . . talk to me! What ideas do you have for me that you use with your children to earn money over the summer months or year-round? I’d love to learn from you!