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Wondering how to make grocery shopping fun for kids? Is it even possible to make grocery shopping fun for kids? I think it is, and I’m happy to share a bunch of ideas for you with the hopes that you too can take your kids to the grocery store and that you all will have fun!
I know grocery shopping is not always a fun thing for you to do. Especially when you have to drag your kids along, and it’s even worse when they don’t want to come. I’ve been there. Many times, so I totally understand.
I learned early on that if I want to save any money at the grocery store and not lose my mind in the process, I need to make sure that the kids are having fun too.
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Daily Coupon Checklist
Before I dive to far into this post, I wanted to tell you about my exclusive couponing freebie that you will love! My Daily Coupon Checklist is just what you need in order to prepare for your grocery shopping trip, and to make sure you stay on track when you are at the store with the kids. This checklist will help you get started with coupons and plan your whole shopping trip in less than 10 minutes a day! You’ll love it! Sign up below and I’ll send it right to you!
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Grocery Shopping Meltdown
There is nothing worse than trying to shop while your child has a meltdown. How in the world are you supposed to use coupons and match up deals when your child is screaming at the top of their lungs because they do not want to be there? It’s impossible!
I don’t know about you, but when I’m in a rush, I make poor choices. I’ll start grabbing the easiest and quickest items I can find that will hopefully make up a dinner just in order to get out of the store as fast as possible. And forget about actually saving any money. Whatever coupons I had planned to use are going to stay in my purse because now I’m too stressed to even care.
Have you been there?
I’m positive you have!
It’s never fun to be “that mom” at the store that has the child who is throwing a tantrum on the floor of the cereal aisle. If you haven’t had this happen to you yet, just wait. It will and when it does, I’m sorry! Just know many have gone before you and many will go after you – it happens to us all – no matter how wonderful our kids are!
Make Grocery Shopping Fun For Your Kids
I’ve spent a lot of time, as a stay at home mom, grocery shopping. Over the years I’ve found ways to make it more fun for me and for my kids.
In fact, I love to go grocery shopping – I have ever since I was a little girl. I’ve always enjoyed trying to find the best deals and to match up coupons with the store sales. I learned as a little girl that saving money on groceries was possible and can be fun.
Now, as a mom, I’ve tried to make sure that my kids love to grocery shop too! After all, it’s a part of life and it might as well be fun!
Let me share a few ideas of ways you can make grocery shopping more fun for your kids and hopefully the whole experience will be even better for you too!
Here is a quick list of the ways to make grocery shopping fun for kids and then I’ll further explain each one:
- Include Your Kids in The Planning Process
- Make Their Own List
- Clip Their Own Coupons
- Find Items On Their List
- Child Shopping Carts
- Get a Free Cookie
- Shop Quick
- Use Self Checkout
Include Your Kids In The Planning Process
One of the best ways to make grocery shopping fun for your kids is to include them in on the whole grocery shopping process. After you snag my Daily Coupon Checklist, have your kids do each of the daily tasks with you. They only take 10 minutes a day to complete and I promise your kids can help! Sign up below to snag your free copy of my Daily Coupon Checklist now!
SAVINGS TIP: Make sure you check your Ibotta app before you head to the store to see what other good deals you might find that week! Wondering what Ibotta is and why you should use it to save extra money on your groceries? Read this post now: Why You Should Use Ibotta To Save Money.
Make Their Own List
When you sit down to make your grocery list, have your kids make a list too! If they can’t write letters yet, just have them draw the items you need instead. Make sure they bring their list to the store too! I like to make sure they can check off the items on their list with a crayon or pencil.
Making a list is a great way for your child to practice writing their letters. For older kids it’s a great way to practice spelling and penmanship. You can take it to a whole new level with your older kids by making them keep track of the regular and sale price of the items on their list as well.
Clip Their Own Coupons
Have your kids help you clip out coupons! If your kids are younger and don’t have good scissor skills yet, then give them some of the coupons you don’t plan to use and have them practice.
I used to sort through the coupons and would make two stacks. One for the coupons I wanted to use and would clip out myself, and one for the coupons I wasn’t going to use. I would give my kids the stack I didn’t plan to use for them to cut out just in case they accidentally cut off the barcode or the expiration date.
I would still allow them to bring the coupons they clipped to the store, but we just didn’t buy any of those products. That way, they could still play and use their coupons as you shop and you don’t need to worry that they will drop one or lose one. If your kids are younger, they may not even notice that you are not actually buying the items pictured on the coupons they clipped out.
Find Items On Their List
Give your kids a few items to find on their list. I like to give mine a few easy items for their list that I do have coupons for. As we get to that aisle, I let them try to find the item from the picture on the coupon.
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A great example of how to do this is the cereal aisle. Cereal is one of those items that goes on sale a lot. You should always try to buy cereal when it’s on sale and when you also have a coupon to go with it.
Have your child add cereal to their list and then using your coupons that you have for that cereal sale, have them try to find that cereal from the picture on the coupon. Once they find it, help them find the correct size by looking at the coupon and looking at the cereal box.
Next you can have them count how many boxes you need. based off the sale and how many coupons you have. They can even put the cereal in their shopping cart! Then have them mark that item off their list.
It’s great to include your kids in the whole grocery shopping process! It teaches them how to coupon as well as keeps them much more invested in the process.
Now, I know what you are thinking, Karina, shopping this way is going to make the entire process take so much longer! Yep, it will, but it just might help it go smoother and will make grocery shopping fun for kids. Plus, your kids will be learning a valuable lesson about how to save money using coupons!
Child Shopping Carts
One excellent way to keep my child engaged in the whole process of grocery shopping was to allow them to push their own shopping cart. When your child is old enough to listen to directions from you, they are old enough to push their own cart.
This was a rite of passage in my house! I picked up this very cute yellow shopping cart at a garage sale when my oldest son was a baby, and it was our favorite toy in the whole house.
Each of my kids was allowed to use this shopping cart at one time in their childhood. All three of them brought this cart to the grocery store to shop with me, and at one point we even had to shopping carts at our house.
I had set rules with my kids when they were using the shopping cart and if they chose not to follow those rules, we would take the shopping cart back out to the car and they would have to ride in the top baby seat of my shopping cart – strapped in.
This usually did the trick for them. They would much rather have their freedom to walk around the store and proudly show off their shopping cart.
Get a Free Cookie
One of my favorite parts about going to the grocery store with my mom when I was a little girl, was the free, pink cookie from the store. They were soo good.
If your local store gives out cookies, then go get one! It’s a small thing for your child to look forward to! You can even save the cookie for half way through your shopping trip as a reward for good behavior!
Try your best to have your shopping trip fully planned in order to make it quick. We all know kids have a short attention span, so try not to have a marathon shopping trip with the kids.
There have been times when I knew I had a lot of coupons and a lot of items on my list that week. In that case, I would try to wait until I could go to the store on my own. If you have the option to do that, then consider leaving the kids at home.
Or consider making two trips to the grocery store. That way, you can get a few things with your kids so they can help, and then the majority of your items when they are at home with dad.
I’ve done this before, but I’ll be honest, most of the time I would take my kids with me. The grocery store was always so much busier on the weekends that I preferred to just get it done on Friday morning before the rush of the weekend.
Use Self Checkout
Kids love to help with checking out! If you don’t have too many items in your cart, use the self checkout and let your kids help! My kids love to do this part of the grocery shopping and if you’d ask them, they would tell you that checking out is what makes grocery shopping for kids!
I don’t blame them! I think using self checkout is a great too! Plus, I like making sure that all my items are scanning properly and that I’m getting all the deals I planned on getting. Once you are done scanning all your items, let your kids help you scan the coupons too!
When we pay, we always use cash for our groceries, so it’s a good math lesson to have your kids count out the money and put the money into the machine. Again, this is another favorite step for my kids to do at the grocery store!
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All Moms Get Stressed Out!
Remember, all moms get stressed out. All of us! It’s ok if you get frustrated. It does happen, and it doesn’t mean you are a bad mom. Kids, coupons, and grocery shopping all mixed together is stressful.
Try to be patient and try to have the heart of a teacher. Your kids will learn more than you ever thought possible and you all just might make grocery shopping fun for kids! Who knows, your kids might even beg you to come along to the store next time because they had so much fun with you the first time!
Being a stay at home mom, I know there is not always a lot of time away from your kids. There are a lot of mom chores that need to be done, and I know grocery shopping is one of those things on the list.
You can make grocery shopping fun for kids and it can be fun for you too! My hope is that you now have some ideas on how you can make grocery shopping fun for you kids and for you!
Comment below if you have tried some of these things before. Did they work? Did your kids have fun grocery shopping? What other ways have you found to make grocery shopping fun for your kids?