My favorite section of the grocery store to teach my toddler in is the produce section. There are so many opportunities for learning there. The skills that I've focused on in the past with LM are..
Vocabulary/Language Development/ Letter Sounds
1. Practice language skills by discussing common fruits and vegetables...apple, tomato, banana
2. Name different fruits and vegetables that your little one may not be familiar with.. Kale, Cauliflower, Mango
3. Teach letter sounds...K is for Kiwi, B is for Banana, S is for Star Fruit
A great book to share before or after shopping is Eating the Alphabet by Ehlert.
Can your family eat through the alphabet? Keep a list of different foods that you eat thoughout the month- label by the beginning letter. See how many foods you can get from A to Z.
1. Play a color game. How many yellow foods can you find? How many green foods? Name them as you go on a color hunt!
2. If you don't have time for a game, just point the colors as you are shopping. I often do this with LM- learning on the go!
Yellow: Banana, Star Fruit, Squash, Pepper, Lemon
Green: Pepper, Grapes, Kale, Broccoli, Cucumbers
Red: Radish, Apple, Strawberry, Cranberries
White: Onion, White potatoes
Purple: Grapes, Eggplant, Plums, Purple Cabbage
Orange: Carrots, Oranges, Nectarines
For a list of more colorful fruits and vegetables, be sure to visit Color Wheel of Fruits and Vegetables.
1.How many oranges is Mommy holding? 1,2,3....
2. LM likes to weigh our fruit and I show him the numbers on the scale.. 1 lb, 2 lbs etc.
Set up a play area at home where you child can play store. Be sure that you child has a shopping list to take with them! My older children enjoy playing store to practice money and math skills, so this is actually great for all ages. Just adapt accordingly.
Grocery store learning is not just for preschoolers and toddlers. There is a lot of learning that can take place for older children as well.
1.To practice ABC order, have your child alphabetize your shopping list.
2. How about having your child group your actual groceries by letter after your shopping trip? Grocery ABCs
3. I actually alphabetize all of my coupons in a binder. I have my kids help me with this tedious process. Helps mom organize coupons and helps kids with practicing ABC order.
After a day of shopping, have your child write a shopping mystery or adventure!
Story starter ideas
Suddenly, all of the oranges started rolling on the floor...
Did that cereal box just talk to me...
Shopping Spelling Bee- can you spell the items on this weeks list?
Weight- Estimate which weighs more the cluster of grapes or the bananas? the apple or the orange? How much do you think 2 oranges will weigh?
Estimate cost of groceries- Have your child work with you to round and add up cost of groceries in the cart.
Shopping challenge- Have your child find groceries on your list that add up to around $10. Let them ring them up in the self-service area. How close were they to $10?
Coupon Math- Have your children help cut out coupons. Show them the shopping advertisement. Find a product and match it to the coupon. Bagels are $3.00. If you use this coupon for .50, how much will the bagels cost? Have them set up the problem on scratch paper.
Talk about where the different foods come from. (example- oranges from Florida. How do they get here? Where is Florida located?)
If your store has an International section- share foods from different countries. Find countries on a map when you get home from shopping trip. Try new items.
Written by Jen