Kerryn Boogaard Kerryn Boogaard
Beverly Goldsmith Beverly Goldsmith
Zoe Bingley-Pullin Zoe Bingley-Pullin

Motivation or bribe?:

Where does motivation end and bribing begin with children?
By Kylie Johnston
Date: May 27 2014
Editor Rating:
bribing-kids

Have you ever bribed your children? When you say something like "If you do this, then you can have that"?

Chances are you'll say yes and you're not alone. Many parents tell me that when they're exasperated this is the most effective way to convince their children to do something. It's a strategy that makes it difficult in the classroom as a teacher, especially in older classes. 

I read a report recently by a US financial investment company which said that such 'low grade' form of bribery is a critical part of the parental toolkit. It showed that 48% of parents bribed their children from time-to-time. My guess is the actual figure may be even higher. 

What is not known is just how different parents may have interpreted the concept of a 'bribe' to their children. The report's lead author, Stuart Ritter of T Rowe Price, commented that if kids get something in return for doing chores, is that an incentive? A reward? Or a bribe?

My anecdotal soundings as a teacher (and a parent who has also been harassed) is that many parents are more than willing to whip out the wallet for their children.

For example, I know of some parents who are willing to pay for a good grade. I teach in a primary school and the going rate for one of the children in the school was $20 for an 'A' - for a primary student!

Another of the dads at the school where I teach, who has primary care of and financial responsibility for his children, told me that has no qualms paying his kids.

He says that when he has had a busy day at work, and has more work or housework to do at night, it's very simple just to say something like 'If you clear the table, stack the dishes and make your lunch for tomorrow, I'll give you ...' something he knows they would value. He says it's usually money but sometimes it's a special treat or privilege. 

I suggested to him that he would better deal with this issues by making these chores part of this children's daily activities as their contribution to the household.

While many of us have done similar things, we still want to be seen as excellent role models.  In the survey mentioned above, 69% of parents say that they are "very" or "extremely" concerned with setting a good financial example.

It's one of the many challenges of parenting. 

The real question when you dangle a monetary reward in front of your children is what it is they're also learning. What goals are you talking about? How do they learn priorities about money or reward? What are you telling them about the importance of saving or working for reward?

In other words, if you're giving your kids money so they will 'be good' or leave you in peace - that's not appropriate. But if you're giving them money to teach them about important budgetary issues like saving, spending, or giving to charity - that can work well. 

Share This Tweet This Email To Friend
Recent Comments
1 Total Comments
write my paper for me says: 2017 07 28
Rating:

This was a really good post dear and found it thoroughly useful and informative to read. I have an assignment due and i asked my sister to write my paper for me as i wanted to explore your blog more but she said no, so i will check back here again. Thanks.

View All Comments
Post a Comment
* your email address will not appear

Please enter the word you see in the image below:


Post a Comment
* your email address will not appear

Please enter the word you see in the image below:33343


Your Comment has been posted
Related Articles
girl_with_money
Show your children good money and financial habits to help…
Read more
little-girl-with-money
'Attitude' is the key to managing money and attitudes are…
Read more
teenager-images
Matching our parenting style to what works for each child…
Read more
pocket_money_economy
The pocket money economy is estimated at $1.4 billion, which…
Read more
Shipping-containers-freight-wallpaper-preview

Latest Tech Used In Shipping Containers
Read how the shipping industry has revolutionised

Motherpedia cover-2

Win 1 set of a 4-book hardcover illustrated boxed set
Barbara Murray’s new 4-book Sound Stories is perfect for parents and educators and could assist with NAPLAN results

Motherpedia cover (4)

Where to celebrate Oktoberfest Australia
Get ready for this celebration!

Vtech giveaway motherpedia

Win 1 of 3 VTech Toys Pack Giveaway
Playtime is so much more with VTech

Motherpedia cover-4

A Fortnight of Foodie Experiences at East Village
A taste of East Village. What's in it for me?

Globber my too fix up cover

We Try: Globber My TOO Fix Up
A scooter that grows with your child

Throw a winning cricket pitch

3 Steps to a Winning Backyard Cricket Pitch
Ex-Adelaide Oval legend curator Les Burdett shares his tips for getting your backyard cricket pitch test match ready this summer

A bike that follows your kids life cycle - motherpedia - cover

A Bike That Follows Your Kids Life Cycle
Check out the Bunzi 2-in-1 gradual balance bike!

Moonlight lifestyle

Moonlight Cinema to bring…
Moonlight Cinema announces brand new Western Sydney venue

Screen shot 2019-11-26 at 8.29.12 am

Your Magical Christmas Wonderland…
Adventure park is about to light up the night sky with its "Christmas Festival of Lights"

Screen shot 2019-11-21 at 11.11.36 am

The Preston Market Gets…
It's time to feel pumped up for the holiday season!

Bruno-kelzer-zqzuigxcvrq-unsplash

Bunnings team members get…
Help raise funds by buying a snag or donating at your local store.