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Which Jobs Are Open for 13 Year Olds?
Finding a job at age 13 is tricky. The Federal Labor Standards Act sets the minimum employment age at 14, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. You'll have to get creative, and your options are limited, but you can earn money for clothes, gadgets and adventures at 13 years old. If you are more interested in helping others and gaining work experience than earning money, you might be interested in volunteer opportunities.
It's not a glamorous job, but labor in agriculture is open to teenagers. Federal law allows 13-year-olds to work in agriculture outside normal school hours. This means if school begins at 8 a.m., you can work before 8 a.m. If school ends at 3 p.m., you can work after 3 p.m. Your parents must give permission in writing for you to pursue this job. Your responsibilities may include growing and harvesting crops, raising animals or even caring for bees, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Check state laws to find out if your state limits the number of hours you can work.
Care for someone younger than you and earn money. As a babysitter, you get paid for watching a child while the parent is away. The main part of your job is supervising children so they don't get hurt. Knowing what to do in an emergency is another important duty. You will also play with the children, clean up, and make snacks and meals. You can find this job by asking family friends who have children if they need a babysitter.
Pet sitting is like babysitting, except you take care of animals instead of people. If you know of neighbors planning to go away on vacation, you can find out if they need someone to watch their pet. Depending on the type of pet you watch, your duties can include feeding the pet, giving him fresh water daily, petting him and playing with him. If you like animals a lot, you might find this to be a fun way to make money.
You don't earn money volunteering, but helping people is a rewarding undertaking. You improve your community and get work experience to put on your job application when you are older. Pick a cause in which you are passionate about. If you play music or sing, consider performing for older people in nursing homes. Clean up garbage in a neighborhood with other people through organized community events. Some animal shelters allow volunteers your age to help out. If you have trouble finding a volunteer opportunity that interests you, come up with original ideas for helping others.
Chrystal Doucette was health and education reporter for "The Columbia Basin Herald," a staff reporter for the "Snohomish County Tribune" and a contributing writer for the "Everett Business Journal." She owns and operates a retail business full-time since 2010. Baldwin holds a master's degree in communication and a bachelor's degree in journalism.