Age-Appropriate Jobs for 10-Year-Olds

Ten-year-olds are just entering their 'tween years, and many parents believe that it's time for them to start being treated like big kids. Kids at this age are definitely looking for more independence but aren't quite mature enough for a lot of the responsibility that goes along with it.

At 10 years old, kids aren't too young to get an introduction to working and earning a little of their own money. It's a good idea to be clear with them how they'll be allowed to spend that money, and that school is always their top priority. But 10 years is a good age to start educating kids about the value of money and how much things cost. 

Let your kids start small, and figure out which jobs might be a good fit for their 10-year-old personality and maturity level. Whenever possible, a test-run or trial period is a good idea, and there are plenty of tasks and odd jobs that are suitable for kids this age.  

Most of these jobs won't have a set pay scale, so try to find out what the going rate is in your neighborhood for pre-teens. Like any job, the more difficult and time-consuming the work is, the more likely it will pay better. 

Parent's Helper

Mother and daughters baking in kitchen
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While your child is probably still a year or two away from being old enough to babysit unsupervised, being a parent's helper could be a great way to get started. Your child can help care for younger children, while a parent is still at home, but busy with other tasks. 

To determine if your 10-year-old is ready for this job, make sure you know the family your child helps, and visit the family's home before your child starts work.

Yard Work

Boy tossing potato in vegetable garden
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A lawnmower is probably a little too much for a 10-year-old to handle, but that doesn't mean they can't help out in the yard. Raking leaves, watering flowers, and spreading mulch could easily be done by a 10-year-old who likes the outdoors. 

Before getting them started in other people's yards, start with a few jobs in your own yard, Show your child how to work with a garden hose, how to rake leaves, and how to identify things like poison ivy or poison oak, so they know to steer clear. 

Dog Walker Assistant

Girl walking her dog in puddle
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Depending on the child, a 10-year-old may be able to walk one dog at a time. It would be a task that you'll want to let them try out with an adult supervising, to make sure they can handle it. Dog walkers must be alert to possible sudden issues that could cause dogs to react, such as another dog, passing cars, or a cat, and know how to distance themselves and the dog from any trouble.

Kids must also understand how to handle dogs with authority while still being gentle enough not to hurt or scare the animals.

If they're not quite strong enough or otherwise not ready, they could act as an assistant to the dog walker, helping with things like cleaning up after the dog.

House or Pet Sitter

Girl (9-11) crouching on floor feeding dog, smiling
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If there's a neighbor your family knows well who will be out of town, your 10-year-old may be able to pitch in and help. Feeding a dog or cat and making sure they have fresh water, as well as picking up newspapers or mail, are good jobs for kids this age. 

Before your child starts the job, make sure you're familiar with the house, and the pets your child will be caring for. Also, discuss who will keep the house key and make sure it doesn't get misplaced.

Household Helper

While you may want to tie required chores to an allowance, there are probably many additional chores your child could do (and would do) if paid. Often, young children enjoy messy jobs that adults would rather avoid.

Some options include car washing, dusting, cleaning outdoor furniture, and prepping foods for cooking (peeling apples, for example). Because your child is young, he or she will need instruction and some one-on-one coaching before being left alone to complete these types of jobs.