Great Summer Jobs for Kids and Adults

By Debbie Dragon on 9 April 2012 (Updated 20 August 2013) 1 comment

The lazy days of summer may not be here yet, but for many kids and adults, now is the time to start thinking about a summer job. There are summer jobs for children of all ages, and some new opportunities for earning income as an adult become available during the summer months, too. Here are some ideas to get you started. (See also: 25 Ways to Make Money Today)

Jobs for Kids Under 12

Once children realize that having money means they can buy fun things, they want to earn some money of their own. Until the child is old enough to get working papers, they’re not allowed to get a job. To encourage their entrepreneurial spirit and desire to earn some money, here are some ideas for helping young children earn some summer cash:

  • Lemonade stand
  • Bake sale
  • Car wash (in your driveway)
  • Yard sale
  • Summer chores around your home
  • Yard work (perhaps there are some elderly neighbors who could use a hand raking their yard or clearing away brush?)

Jobs for Tweens 12–16

As children reach their young teen years, they’re often more determined to make some spending money of their own. This is the age when the kids begin asserting more independence and spending more time out with friends, and thus, the desire to have money in their pockets increases. Unfortunately, they’re still too young to get on payroll at most places, but they have a few more opportunities for earning money than the younger children. Here are some ideas:

  • Lawn care
  • Babysitting, mother's helper, or junior camp counselor
  • Pet sitting or dog walking
  • Selling their outgrown toys and video games on eBay or Craigslist
  • Online businesses

Jobs for Teenagers With Working Papers

Once a teenager is old enough to get working papers, he or she can start applying for “real jobs.” There are limitations on the type of work they are allowed to do, but some common summer jobs for this age group include:

  • Fast food employee
  • Restaurant waitstaff
  • Paper delivery person
  • Camp counselor
  • Lifeguard
  • House cleaner
  • Amusement park staff/ride operator
  • Telemarketer
  • Administrative assistant

Once your teenager is old enough to get on the payroll of a company, you should stress the importance of saving a percentage of their income if you haven’t already. You can even help your teenager earn their first million dollars, since they have adequate time to use the power of compounding interest.

Jobs for Adults

As an adult looking to earn extra money during the summer months, you have a wide range of options, from temporary employment at local tourist destinations to part-time evening or weekend jobs centered around your existing career. You can even start a summer business to grow your income. Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Lawn and garden service (See also: The 6 Best Lawn Mowers)
  • Tourist destinations: hotels, day camps, resorts, and campgrounds
  • Bartending
  • Babysitting (many parents are in a jam during the summer months when school is out)
  • Freelance and work-at-home jobs
  • Farmhand
  • Organizing assistance (help others get their garages, basements, closets, etc organized)
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Meg Favreau's picture

Adults can definitely look at amusement park work too, if there's a park in the area. The park I worked at all through high school had certain departments that were mostly staffed by adults. The pay isn't amazing, but it can be fun.