Shopping with Young Children-No Tatrums at the Grocery Store

Walking throughthe grocery store with your kids may sometimes feel as like walking through a mine field.  Count Chocula is at eye-level to your 4 year old, there are those little toys hanging on shelves just about the place your toddler in the cart can grab them.  That’s just wrong.  But it is reality so here are some tips to help you make your trip not only more peaceful, but fun:

  1. Making a list stops impulse buying and gets you in and out of the store more quickly.
  2. Having a healthy snack with the kids in the car on the way to the store ensures none of you will be hungry.  Everything won’t look delicious, and there won’t be hunger crankiness to deal with.
  3. A book or toy can distract your younger kids
  4. Have you noticed that when you add coupons online, the list can be printed with pictures?  That’s a great way to engage your pre-reader.  He can look carefully for the items, matching them to the photos.  Or, you can make a picture list from weekly ads.  That takes extra time up front, but it’s a great literacy activity, you can reuse the list and be amazed at how your child’s observation skills and even reading skills improve.
  5. Play “I Spy (with my little eye)”.  In the juice aisle say, “I spy with my little eye and apple.  Can you find an apple?”
  6. Be creative and think of car bingo questions to keep the kids of any age distracted. Some quick ideas: count rows, look for colors or specific numbers (4 pack, 12 pack, 10 for $10), or words.  Older kids and time your visit, pick out the shortest line.  Does it really move faster?  How many people are not wearing jeans?
  7. If budget allows and you can let your child choose one special item you can use the process of choosing to teach a few health and nutrition skills.  For example, set a guideline that his choice can’t contain sugar in the first four ingredients.  You make the call and your child makes a safe choice.

Buying groceries can be a lot simpler if you take one more minute to plan.  And it’s a lot more fun, when you get to play with and teach your kids at the same time!


Thomas Learning Centers provides NECPA accredited preschool and childcare at the most affordable rates in the Denver Metro Area.  Check us out at , click on the offers below, drop in for a visit to get to know more about us. We’d love to meet you!

Call  877-938-1442 for general info

Lakewood 303-237-0917 or Westminster 303-427-8831


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: