Pocket Money & Allowances for Primary School

Today is the first day of school. Nicole is going Primary 3 and Nathan is going Primary 1. One of the most important things about starting school is POCKET MONEY or ALLOWANCES! Yup, money talks even at this young age.

I’ve contemplated about this for a while. Should we give daily allowances? How about weekly? Or Monthly? After much discussion with various ones, we concluded that for kids under 12, it may be wiser to give them daily allowances. It would help them better manage their finances and give them a small sense of the power of money!

Here’s what we are using for the distribution of the monies:

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These are pill boxes! I found them to be really useful to allocate the monies. This is how we do it:

  • I will put their daily allowance into the boxes accordingly. 1 for Monday, 2 for Tuesday, 3 for Wednesday etc
  • When they take their allowance in the morning, 10% of that goes straight to #7, that’s Sunday. We believe kids should learn tithing at the soonest possible age too.
  • When they get home after school, all remaining monies go to #6, that’s Saturday or I call it Savings box
  • We clear the boxes at the end of the week. Everything in #6 goes to their piggy banks, and everything in #7 gets dropped in the offering bucket on Sunday.

We did this with Nicole for two years and it was very good. She has a habit of saving and uses the savings for buying birthday gifts for the family. And she knows to honour God first with her money before she even gets to use it.

So far, this is effective, cos everything is in coins. I need larger boxes for the notes as they grow older!

One more important thing to get for the kids with regards to monies:

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I’m not sure what you call that. But that wriggly thing attached to the wallet is very important. We hook it to the skirt/shorts pocket, so that when the child takes out the wallet during recess to pay for stuff, he can do it easily. But the critical thing is, we don’t have to worry about it falling out of the pocket during play, or if he doesn’t put it back properly.

It’s a simple chain. We got it at the local Pasar Malam stall for $1-$2. Really highly recommended!

So that’s our money preparation for school. For Nathan, all the background work’s done.. we’ve taught about money, change, counting, and what you cannot (snacks/erasers/papers). The real test is on the ground! I pray with his voracious appetite, he has enough to fill his tummy. I pray he doesn’t spill the food as he carries it in his couldn’t-care-less-boy-attitude.

How’s your preparation like for allowances in school?

**Update 30 Dec 2014**

The containers can only last 1 year max. This is because of the daily opening and closing, and at 6 a.m. in the morning, things can get quite rough. So please buy something that doesn’t cost too much. Your best bet is the regular $2 stores like Daiso.

**Update 7 Jan 2016**

Nicole is now P5. We started giving her a weekly Allowance. It’s time she learns to spend within her means, be responsible for what’s given to her. The temptation is always great to spend it all on the first half of the week, or like many kids, LOSE the money during the week! Ahhh! This mummy is strict and won’t give in if that happens.

Here’s what we are using for Nicole. 

Allowance Box

Yup, that the P5 decoration on her box. She’s going to add more stickers and tape soon! How does her box work? It’s similar to the pill boxes.

  • I will put her weekly allowance into the first box. Just notes, not in any smaller denomination
  • On Monday, when she takes her allowance, she has to decide on her own, how much to bring to school, and break the notes herself
  • She knows that 10% goes straight to the last box “Offering”. We still believe kids should learn tithing at the soonest possible age.
  • When she gets home after school, all remaining monies go to “Savings” box.
  • As the pill boxes, we clear hers at the end of the week. Everything in Savings goes to her piggy banks, and everything in Offering gets dropped in the offering bucket on Sunday.

I’m praying my kids learn better money management, savings and honoring God with this!