Best Jobs for Kids Under 13

Child-friendly jobs to teach responsibility and earn money

Best Jobs for Kids Under 13

Image by Jiaqi Zhou. © The Balance 2019

At some point, your child may feel that an allowance isn't enough money for their spending habits and they would like to earn some additional money. There are lots of great jobs for kids that can help them learn about responsibility while earning their own money. The pay rates are variable based on your location, the difficulty, and the length of time to complete each job.

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Teens and pre-teens can earn money by babysitting younger children for neighbors and friends. The Red Cross offers babysitting classes to prepare 11- to 15-year-olds for babysitting. For younger children, a mother's helper job may be appropriate; the parent remains at home during the babysitting job.

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Pet Sitter

This is often a great starter job for young children. The responsibilities typically include stopping by a neighbor's house to feed an animal a few times per day while the owners are away. Also, they can offer to bring in the newspaper or mail and water any houseplants.

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Lemonade Stand

The lemonade stand is usually the first thing that people think of when brainstorming business activities for kids. The price per cup has gone up, but the lessons on a hot summer day are still very valuable for children.

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Lawn Mowing

If your child likes to be outdoors and regularly mows your lawn, this could be a good job to explore. Mowing jobs could be one time while the homeowner is on vacation or for a whole summer if they find someone who can't or doesn't like to mow their lawn. Be sure to determine if your child will use your mower or the homeowner's mower. A great way to start a lawn mowing job for kids is to ask your neighbors.

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Yard Work

In addition to mowing the lawn in the summer, there are plenty of activities that homeowners may need assistance with throughout the year. Kids can explore tasks such as snow shoveling, raking leaves, and planting flowers depending on the season. The jobs can be done alone or together with the homeowner.

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Dog Walker

If your child loves pets, this might be a great activity for both your child and the dog to get some exercise. Make sure that your child feels comfortable with the pet before they take them for a walk the first time.

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Paper Route

The perfect job for early risers is delivering the morning paper. Consider a weekly paper if a daily paper would be too time-consuming. Discuss with your child upfront what will happen on a rainy day; otherwise, you may end up regularly driving your child's route.

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Working Retail

Typically children cannot begin this type of work until they are teens; the laws vary by state. Check with your local ordinances to determine the minimum age to work and if the child needs a worker's permit. Requirements for worker's permits also vary by state.

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Family Business

This job often works best when you own your own business. You can have your children help with filing papers, mailing letters, and other office work. Also, you can work around the school schedule with flexibility; it's a great weekend job for kids.

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If your child likes to swim, lifeguarding can be a great summer job for kids. They'll get to spend time outdoors at the beach or the pool. Also, if you have indoor pools in your area, your child can also become lifeguard during the winter months. 

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