With end-of-year report cards arriving in homes across the globe, many parents are thinking about how to reward their children for those high marks. A great question emerges: should I pay my child for good grades? My son got his report card last week. It was great one and we were proud of him. So my husband suggested we give him a bonus for his good grades (aka pocket money as he is 13). I was on the fence about it.
What do you think: should I pay my child for good grades?
In my opinion I should not pay my child for good grades and here is why:
- Money is not a reward. It should be earned through work. Maybe I am too accountant in my thinking but getting good grades is not a job.
- What if your child works hard and does not get good grades. It happens. What message are you sending to your child? That hard work doesn’t matter unless you get the results we want?
- Good grades should not be rewarded. The reward is the grade and the hard work. I think if we reward good grades we may see a decrease of interest in school. For example, at 6, you promise him $5, at 7 year old, your child may want more money, etc. The older they get the smarter they get about money. So if at 12, you cannot afford to reward him what he wants, he may not want to work hard because he knows he won’t get what he wants.
- Reward= bribe (in my opinion). We should encourage the love of learning in children and not the love of working to get a reward from parents. Now I am not talking about NOT celebrating the report card and hard work. We usually celebrate the year end with a special treat for ALL the family members: we go to the movies, order their favorite take out. That’s different.
- Good grades and hard work is what is expected from kids to do. As parents are expected to raise their children, kids are expected to go to school and learn. Am I being paid for preparing food for my kids? What message am I sending to my child when I pay him for good grade: Pay you for something you are SUPPOSED to do?
Bottom line: good grades and hard work should be congratulated and shared with the family friends. It helps with the self esteem and pride. There is no reason, however, that the reward needs to be monetary.
What do you think? Should I pay my child for good grades? Do you pay yours? Should we use other types of rewards? I would like to hear from you about this in the comment section below.