Do You Pay Out Money for Grades?

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It’s not fair! ALL my friends get money for their good grades! It seems that this is a common thing and the amounts of loot vary greatly. In the new world of insecurities, competition and uncharted land AKA middle school, there some new concerns and pressures. Our newest concern is the idea of do we pay out money for grades.

Pay Out

Here’s the scoop. My 11-year-old has informed me that we do not reward her properly for any of the grades that she achieves. She is correct when she pleads that she works extremely hard in school. She works harder than any student I have ever known in the past 15 years I have been a teacher. As you would expect, there is that mom guilt…bubbling up to the surface. So I dig a little, I ask, “What do your friends get for their grades”? Of course, the response is a little less concrete. Really, I’m not so sure she knows how much her friends are cashing out, but apparently, they are!

What’s the Lesson Here?

Our philosophy has always gone a bit against the norm. Our family has never given an allowance for contributing to household responsibilities. We have tried to do a reward system but never really stuck to it. So in the end, no monetary compensation has been given for helping with jobs around the house. We believe that it is a family’s responsibilities to come together and help the unit as a whole. When talking about paying out money for grades in our family, I explain that down the road in the future, she will be expected to work hard and do her best to excel because that is the level of excellence that she should hold for herself. This has worked for us and that’s our way of doing things.

When it comes to grades I have seen thepro’s and con’s to giving money for grades. As a teacher, some grades are just not attainable for some kids. Expecting an A in a subject area that you know your child can not achieve for whatever reason, is unfair. It’s like dangling a reward that a child will never be able to reach, just to say “work harder”. Or even worse, it’s a defeating sense of failure when a child knows these are your expectations for them and they can’t attain them, time and time again.

You Got This!

So my answer to my sweet girl’s exclamations is no we will not compensate you for your grades. We WILL, however, give you encouragement to do your very best. You will have all the help you need and more. We promise our support, as you work through strategies to decode your dyslexia, as you become a stronger reader. Our family will celebrate your victories and help you improve if you struggle. Here and there, we will get some special gifts or do things to celebrate your amazing work ethic. Yes, maybe that’s our way of paying out for your grades? 

What are your thoughts, do you pay out money for grades? I’m really curious! 

Trophies, Allowances and Bribes… oh my!

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Lisa Hellman
Lisa was born and raised on Long Island, NY. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree from SUNY New Paltz with a concentration in Fine Arts. Lisa has worked for Conde Nast Publications, and in the Stock Photography industry, licensing intellectual properties. She moved down to Florida with her husband, two kids, two cats, and a dog in 2004. Four years later her last daughter was born, and since then, they have made Odessa their home for the past 14 years. After taking a seven-year hiatus from the corporate world, to stay home with her children, she returned to work as a substitute teacher, thinking she would do that part-time since she loved teaching her own kids over the years, as they developed and grew. Little did she know, she’d become a certified elementary school teacher for the next 13 years! During her time away from school, she enjoys spending time with family and doing things around her community. Lisa loves spending time with her friends as well, enjoying a glass of wine and having great conversations! She loves the outdoors and the beach, as this is her haven. Lisa enjoys the arts and dabbles in pottery, drawing and crafting.

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