Do you ever feel like all your money goes toward groceries? Out of all the non-fixed expenses a household can have, food costs take the biggest bite out of the average monthly budget. Give your child a leg up on this lifelong skill by challenging them with this fun and educational activity!
- Coupon circulars and/or newspapers
- Writing materials
- Piggy bank
- Give your child a reasonable budget to be used for a week’s worth of groceries for your family.
- Instruct your child to create a shopping list. Let them know they will be tasked with going “shopping” for every item on the list while spending as little as possible. All extra money should go into the piggy bank.
- Tell them to be sure to include all meals, drinks, snacks, ingredients, pantry staples, pet food etc. on their grocery list.
- Making no mention of the coupons, have your child complete the task with all the materials provided. After creating the list, let them “shop” for everything by adding the costs of each item and giving you a “receipt” for the total sum. If your young shopper is unsure of an object’s price, they can ask you for help.
- Stress that the challenge in this activity is to see how far the budget for a week’s groceries can go.
- Introduce the coupons, but explain why buying something you have no need for just because there is a coupon is not smart. Let your child decide which coupons are worth using.
- Watch your child use their budgeting skills to “shop” for the family and try to save as much as possible.
When the task is complete, review the results with your child. How much money went into the piggy bank? Were items written on the grocery list because of available coupons, or were the coupons only flipped through after the list was already made? Did your child first create a menu for the week before writing the list? Did they omit anything important? What did they learn from this activity?
You can do this in real life by having your child create a shopping list and then taking them to the store. Allow them to actually select the items and make the purchase of all the week’s groceries, trying to spend as little as possible.
For younger children, you can create a “store,” using fake money and a toy cash register. Place a few items on a table, making sure there are clear prices on each item. Have your child “go shopping” with the money that is available, making sure they are aware that they must have enough money to pay for every object they put in their cart.
To help kick-start your child’s financial future, open a Moola Moola Youth Account at your local SeaComm branch! Your child will have online access to their accounts through NetTeller™, receive quarterly statements, and earn dividends on their money. Click here to get started.
TIP: Don’t forget to utilize your Benefits Plus® membership for additional grocery savings! Once you upgrade your basic checking account to a Benefits Plus® checking with SeaComm, you will gain access to a free grocery coupon club, discounted gift and eGift cards, retail and prescription savings, and much more. Visit your local SeaComm branch to enroll.
For complete information, terms, conditions and exclusions please visit www.benefits-plus.org or call 866-329-7587.