I have been writing about using a token economy (most recently here) to link allowance to chores, at least temporarily to build better habits among my three older children. The kids start each month with a jar of popsicle-stick tokens; each day they miss doing one of their chores, they lose a token; and at the end of the month, the lost tokens are deducted from their allowance payout.
My four-year-old is not quite ready to handle the abstract idea of "allowance" and "deduct," and I am choosing not to give him regular chores. Instead we are offering him little jobs here and there: fold the napkins, pick up the baby's toys from the living room rug, put shoes away in the mudroom.
When he does a job that we asked, he gets a star:
(He designed the star page himself, complete with lion.)
At the end of the month, when his siblings get their allowance with the appropriate deductions, the 4yo gets a nickel for every star on his page. He rushes up to put the precious nickels in his froggy bank. Then the page is ripped off (see the staples?) to reveal a blank one for the next month.
He still often declines to do a job, but not every time. What I hope will happen is that he will start looking for jobs that need to be done and offering to do them. If he starts getting really useful I will give him a raise. Maybe to a dime per job.
Last month he got nine nickels. It is a start.