I have my 11-year-old, Eric, figure out optimum package sizes to buy. For example, is it a better deal to buy four rolls of paper towels for $6 or six rolls for $8? He learns how important math is in the real world, and we keep track of our savings to splurge on a fun item at the end of our shopping trip.
Felice Lin Amkraut
I print out images of the items on my shopping list and create bingo game cards with them.
Our 5-year-old, Bradley, draws what we need to do for the day. He loves to help and loves to draw, so it's a creative way for him to do both. A recent list included pictures of ham, peas, bread, and carrots, plus getting a haircut and cleaning the garage. It helped Dad remember everything on his long list.
Cape Coral, FL
My three kids and I each guess how much the grocery total will be. Whoever is closest doesn't have to unload the bags.
I go alphabet shopping with my 3-year-old, Presley. I write all the letters from a to z in a notebook, then we cross off the correct letter for what we put in the cart: a for apples, m for milk, and so on. We have fun trying to get z. We did buy zip ties once and got to cross it off.
Long Beach, CA
I let my kids, ages 10 and 13, be my "human GPS." I tell them in advance where we'll be running errands, and they get to MapQuest the route. Then they tell me, in the car, how to get there. They are now great with north, south, east, and west and remember many local landmarks. And they love running errands with me!
Originally published in the March 2015 issue of FamilyFun magazine.