Top 5 ways your pre-teen can make money this summer

(Photo: WFLA)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – With some East Tennessee schools already closed for summer break and others about to close, teenagers may have summer jobs lined up, but what about pre-teens?

Child labor laws don’t allow pre-teens to work very much, but some of them might be ambitious.

In the past, middle school age babysitters were the norm. Now, some parents won’t leave their middle-schoolers home alone, let alone in charge of younger children.

But how about helping a senior, like staying an elderly widow or a older couple for an hour to keep them company? In addition to wanting some company, seniors may need help with chores. Put out the word to family and friends to find out who might be in need of help.

Related story: Summer jobs for teens still available in Knoxville-area

If you have a dog at home, your child is likely comfortable with the animals. Walking other people’s dogs can introduce your child to the wonderful world of pets, and they can pick up some extra cash doing it. Dog size is probably the most important consideration for a preteen pursuing this money-making option. Make sure you know both the owner and the dog well to make this suggestion a success.

Pet-sitting for vacationing neighbors is another perfect gateway job for preteens. It requires some responsibility, but it’s also low-key, with minimal opportunity for mistakes. Pet sitters usually aren’t required to do anything too strenuous. Because pet-sitting is usually a short-term commitment, it can be a way for preteens to make money without feeling as though they’ve given up their entire summer.

If your son or daughter already helps you with yard work, how about doing lawn work for the neighbors? It can be a good way to get outside while earning cash at the same time. Somewhere between the ages of 10 and 12, they can generally handle a gas-powered push mower, or riding mower. Your neighbors might be the logical first stop in finding this type of work.

Then there are lemonade stands. Plenty of kids make good money running lemonade stands. There is even an organization called Lemonade Day that provides resources to help children learn the entrepreneurial skills needed to successfully run a stand. To run a successful stand is to set it up alongside the family yard sale, or at least time it to coincide with other yard sales in your neighborhood. Check with your local municipality to make sure you follow any local rules.

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