Part Time Job Opportunities And Ideas For Kids

Part time job opportunities and ideas for kids

In the early parts of the century the debate was raging over child labor. When is a child no longer a child (i.e. when can they legally work)? What is the difference between work and slave labor? Should there be a minimum wage? All these things were hotly debated. While the legal issues have more or less been worked out, still there remains much discussion over what activities constitute work and who should be allowed to work at what age.

A job is any service you provide to some entity for which you are reimbursed by some means (usually money, though Sam Walton's personal secretary was paid with company stock). For most people their first "job" was working for their parents, doing chores and collecting a weekly or monthly allowance. Many teens eagerly await their first job for a number of reasons. It's a chance to earn money (which they can save for a car, etc.) plus a chance to prove their responsibility. Everyone knows that if they can prove how responsible they are in one area they will be given more responsibilities (and privileges). Further, a job is a way to begin distancing oneself from the parental "nest." For all these reasons jobs are generally something teens look forward to.

In most states kids may work at the age of 16, and work permits can be attained for 14 and 15. There is one major issue though for children 14 and 15 years old""transportation. In most states you have to be 16 to drive (although the trend is to raise the driving age), consequently a parent (or possibly friend) must take you to work. Unfortunately, this seems to undermine, at least in part, any increase in self-sufficiency and responsibility that the child may otherwise feel. As a result of this many teens find themselves waiting until they are 16 before they work (at least before they work more than a few hours a week).

By the time someone has been 16 for awhile and summer comes he/she is faces with the possibility of a full-time job (40 hours a week). Sometimes you can get them, sometimes you can't""it depends on too many factors to go into here. If you can get them it means more money, more work, and more responsibility. Unfortunately, most don't match your skills too well, so you get stuck mopping floors or flipping burgers or stuffing brochures. In the end, though, you increase your responsibility level, you learn, and you get your money.

As a result of the discussion in the previous two paragraphs, it seems to follow that 16 is probably a good age to start working (that is, to work at least 20 hours a week). Some people with tolerant and caring parents or great friends may be able to hitch a ride to work and in so doing go to work earlier. One final word, though: if you haven't yet graduated from high school don't expect to find a job that matches your skill level. That doesn't mean you won't, and it doesn't mean you won't enjoy your job, but it does increase the likelihood of a couple years of menial labor.

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