Happy Labor Day to all in the USA!
As I ponder the reason for the holiday, I began to think of the different jobs I’ve had through the years, especially the very first ones I had. I was not particularly good at my jobs, but I learned a lot about hard work and giving my best regardless.
First jobs can be anything from the service industry to teaching (tutoring) to child or pet care. I believe it is important for kids to learn to work at a young age. I also believe it is important that kids learn to work at jobs of all kinds, including things they may not particularly like.
What could be a better way of learning to deal with difficult things! If your kids are normally being waited on, a first job as a waiter could be just what they need to get experience on the other side of the table from where they normally are!
Here are some of the first job that my husband, my siblings, and I had before graduating from high school.
- My brother had a newspaper route when he was 8-10 years old. It was an advertising circular once or twice a week. I remember helping him stuff newspapers in plastic bags when it rained.
- We took care of people’s pets when they went out of town (ages 8-12; my parents had to drive me).
- I babysat (starting at age 12).
- I taught swimming lessons starting at age 14.
- A brother assisted a family friend in his office (ages 15+).
- My husband swept the grounds at a local amusement part (starting at age 14).
- I sold luggage in a store (age 16-17).
- My husband worked in an ice cream shop (ages 16-17).
- My sister worked as a hostess and waitress in a local pancake shop (ages 15-17).
I don’t believe there are any places that hire an 8 year old. The days of the paper route are no longer here. Legally, many states have a minimum wage and a age requirement before part time work can be entered in to.
I feel a little sad that my son will not get work experience at as young an age, but I look forward to exposing him to any first job that can help him learn to do difficult things and work hard.
What was your first job? Will you expect your kids to get a job before they graduate high school? What “first jobs” will you help them get started in?