Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Summer Employment

This week in our School of Home Skills, Brian is teaching the kids how to take out the trash.  They've been helping with this task for years, but we want them to know how to handle the job-- from start to finish-- alone.  They need to know how to empty all the smaller trash cans into the larger one, how to remove the bag (without dumping trash all over the kitchen), how to sweep the stray crumbs that gather around the trash can, how to tie the filled bag, where to put the bag outside until Brian can take it to the dump, where we keep the roll of trash bags and how to put a new one in, and the importance of washing hands after handing the dirty job.  Neither of the kids is especially thrilled about this job, but they are rising to the task just as they did when I taught them how to thoroughly clean the car inside and out after we went to the beach last week.  

We've taken our summer training a step further.  Gavin began talking about saving all his money to put towards a  LEGO set.  He figured out how many weeks he would need to save his small weekly allowance and, with Brian's help, researched what website offered the best deal.  

We decided to give him the choice of reaching his goal more quickly by working for it.  Our gravel driveway has large patches of weeds that grow up between the stones.  Brian is able to spray it, but only if the weeds are under control (which they are not).  He trained Gavin how to pull the weeds up by the roots and fill a bucket.  He agreed to pay Gavin $1 per filled bucket. Gavin thought it sounded like a great deal, but he soon realized it was hard work! 

It was hot, and Brian had strict standards.  Gavin had to fill the bucket above the rim.  He had to clear one area before moving to another.  He had to pull all but the tiniest of weeds.   He was motivated enough to work at his task, though.  Each bucket took about 1 hour to fill.  Then he dumped it in the designated spot and started in again.  

We chose to set Friday as pay day.  Instead of paying him each dollar as it was earned, he was responsible for keeping a record and reporting his total on Thursday night as Brian did the bills.  

Gavin's employment was a success!  At the end of last week, he was able to purchase his desired LEGO set and is now enjoying the fruit of his labor. 

1 comment:

  1. I think this is a great idea, too many people think if something is hard than it's not worth it. What a great way to teach Gavin that hard work has a reward.


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