Talking About Earning

Chapter 01

Why talk about earning?

Sadly, money doesn’t always appear magically as pocket money or birthday presents. It’s vital for children to learn they might need to work for money instead. Helping kids earn cash, rather than just handing it out, teaches them about the value of money. Understanding that different jobs earn different salaries could also start them thinking about future careers.

Chapter 02

What is earning?

Earning is when you get money for doing something, rather than being given money, winning it or borrowing from someone else. You do the work and in return you get a reward.

Grown ups earn money for different jobs, from a firefighter to an astronaut or vet. Some jobs earn lots, some jobs earn very little – and some jobs aren’t paid at all! Other jobs only pay more if you have particular skills or are super successful, like footballers, youtubers or pop stars. Some people like getting paid for working for someone else, while others prefer to start their own businesses to earn money.

Kids can earn money too. You might not get paid for tidying your room, if it’s something you do as part of a family. But you might get extra cash for jobs like washing the car or selling your old toys at a car boot sale. Get cracking with great ideas and you could earn extra cash!

Fun Fact

Some of the wackiest ways to earn money include becoming a pet food taster (£20,000 a year), professional queuer (£22,000 a year), a golf ball diver (£25,000 a year) and the Queen’s piper (£48,000 a year).

Expert View

"I have always talked to my children about how much things cost, as I want them to understand the value of money. One way I reinforce this is by giving them pocket money in exchange for doing chores at home. The chores have got more time consuming as they have got older. Erin, who is 9, has been laying the dinner table, putting away dishes and helping look after the dog in exchange for her pocket money. My teenagers do more, from putting bins out to even painting fences!"

Chapter 03

Talking to your kids about earning

We love a good chat at RoosterMoney, so here are some easy ideas to kick start conversations about needs and wants:


Job top trumps

Challenge your kids to think of different jobs that earn money. Who earns more - dustman or dentist? Hairdresser or banker? Run through as many jobs as they can come up with and discuss the differences like hours worked or skills needed.


Future me

Ask your children what they want to be when they grow up, always a winner. Let their imaginations run riot! What could they do now to prepare for a future job - practising football, writing stories? What would their life be like on that kind of salary, whether more or less?


What I do all day

Talk to your kids about your own job - what you actually do, how it earns money, why you do it, how you got started, and whether it earns more of less than other jobs you’ve done.

Expert View

"Paying children for completing chores is a great way to start teaching essential life skills. I understand it isn’t for everyone, because you may consider chores as a family task, but you can still pay your children for jobs that you might otherwise pay someone else to do, such as cleaning the car or clearing out weeds in the garden. This will give them an important lesson about the value of money - helping them understand that it isn’t free from the bank!"

Chapter 04

Having some fun with it

We all learn best by doing, so here are some fun activities you can try:


Draw up a chore chart

Make a list of jobs your children can do to earn extra pocket money, from unloading the dishwasher to sorting laundry, raking up leaves and washing the car. Set different prices based on how much work is required! Include options for older children if relevant, like mowing the grass, dog walking, babysitting or running errands. The more they do, the more they can earn - and the quicker kids learn the connection between work and money. Use our chore chart template >


Virtual rewards

Maybe your child isn’t so motivated by cold hard cash. Instead, encourage them to work for other rewards, such as extra time on a tablet, extra data on their mobile phone, or credit towards extra features, skins or levels on digital games.


Get retro gaming

Try the old skool option, and play board games with your children that involve earning money, such as Monopoly or The Game of Life.


Start selling

Ask your child to choose clothes, toys and equipment they’ve grown out of, and help them set up a yard sale or stall at a car boot sale, or sell online. Show the difference between the selling price and any costs involved, like paying for a pitch or forking out for listing fees and postage.


Encourage their inner entrepreneur

Challenge older kids to come up with business ideas. Could they sell services to neighbours - babysitting, gardening or going shopping for older neighbours? Do they have skills that could earn cash, such as tutoring in maths, science or languages, designing websites or selling home-made cakes or cards? Then support them as they get started.

Expert View

"At RoosterMoney, pocket money is our thing! We’ve got loads of bright ideas on what jobs to suggest, based on our chart of the most common chores. Make sure you agree any conditions with your kids, like how often they need to do a job, how long, and what’s involved - yes, they do have to put the vacuum cleaner away after hoovering. If you need inspiration about how much pocket money kids get at different ages, and the top jobs to earn extra, check out our post on “How much pocket money should I give?”

Chapter 05

Other helpful bits & bobs

How RoosterMoney can help

Jobs to earn their allowance: With Rooster Card, you can set up jobs and chores that need to be completed to earn normal pocket money.

Using Allowance Jobs >

Earning extra: Rooster Card also lets parents create extra jobs, to earn money on top of their weekly allowance. Just snap a photo, set a challenge, and it’s over to them!

Setting Extra Jobs >

Star charts: Alternatively, if you don’t want to reward your children with money, you can award them stars instead. Click on ‘Settings’, find your child’s name, click on “Account Details” and under “Earnings” you can select different currencies including stars.

Using Star Charts >