Skip to main content

Back-to-school shopping with kids in tow can lead to some life lessons

For every parent there comes a time to stop picking out clothes for their kids and let them choose their own.
Though it can be difficult to let go of this sense of control, you will eventually decide that the time is right for them to make more of their own decisions in this regard.

Back-to-school shopping is the perfect opportunity to unleash this individualism — and Goodwill is the perfect venue.

There are many positives associated with letting your kids choose their own clothes, including:

  • They can express their opinions:

    Choosing an outfit for the first time gives your kids a chance to express their likes and dislikes. Of course, you may find that they have totally different tastes in clothing than you! Remember: the first few items that they choose are all about experimentation and finding their style.

  • They can become individuals:

    When kids get to the stage of picking out their own clothing, they are also usually developing a sense of individuality. So, when you give them the opportunity to pick out their own items, you are encouraging them to gain a stronger sense of self. At the same time, when many kids are picking out their clothes, they are looking to fit in with friends and other kids at school. They may also want to imitate people that they see on TV or sporting stars. You could also help your kids clarify their decisions by asking them what they like and the reasons they are drawn to these clothes.

  • They will ultimately wear the clothes:

    It can be frustrating to purchase clothes for your kids only to have them refuse to wear them. But when they choose their own clothes, you have a much better idea that they are actually going to wear them. It also can put an end to those morning arguments about what they are going to wear. This is all part of passing over responsibility from yourself and encouraging your kids to have more of a say in the decisions in their lives.

  • It can be fun:

    For kids, they are discovering new freedom which they didn’t have in the past. For you, you are seeing your children take steps toward becoming responsible adults, which is always an incredible thing to witness.

  • A time for lessons:

    Have each child go through their closets and collect items they no longer wear. Then explain what Goodwill will do with those items, and how the money helps the community they call home. When shopping, give each child their own cash. This will help them learn to budget and take charge of their own style. What better way to warm up their brains for school thinking after months of summer fun? Compare Goodwill prices to large retail stores, and explain to them the joy of saving money.

  • Don’t forget to accessorize:

    High-school shopping brings its own unique set of problems. Teens will probably want to pour their whole back-to-school budget into fashion pieces. But don’t let them skip the organizational elements that will streamline life between classes. We’re talking about little hanging baskets, pint-sized mirrors, and other tiny items to keep their locker tidy and useful.

These tips to share on how we can get the kids on board:

  • Be there, but don’t hover:

    Allow your kids the opportunity to seek out their own fashion without a parent in tow by going to the store together but shopping separately. Also, have them outline a checklist to refer to while shopping.

  • Don’t forget about school activities:

    Goodwill is a great source for “spirit days” shopping and other organized school fashion activities throughout the year. That’s because it’s hard to find a store or stores that cover the wide range of attire and accessories needed for those activities. Goodwill Central Coast offers a unique and varied inventory.

As parents we all want our children to become strong, confident, and independent. These life lessons (and more) can occur along the aisles of your Goodwill Central Coast stores. Just let go a little! Your kids may surprise you.