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4 rules that helped my teens do their own back-to-school shopping

Saidah Washington

If I had to give moms advice, it would be to involve your teens in things that concern them as much as possible. I delegate as much to my teens as they can handle, especially when it comes to back-to-school shopping.

This week I challenged them to tackle their own back-to-school shopping list. I gave them a few specific rules, and they did an amazing job.

Rule 1: Make a list

I encourage my kids to make their own back-to-school shopping list now that they are teenagers. I let them search in store or online to find the best price on the things they want or need for school. I let them know what their budget is, and they are pretty much responsible for doing the research involved in finding the items they want.

Rule 2: Clear the clutter

Before they make a list or shop, they are instructed to go through their closet to see what wardrobe items they’ll keep, trash and donate. Before they can write what they need or want, they have to figure out what they have.

Rule 3: Set clear expectations

They are given a set of wardrobe guidelines in order to create a list for my review. Just like with the set budget, they also have wardrobe limits. My boys share a closet, which is easily overrun with clothes. To prevent clutter and waste, we allot a set number of tops, bottoms, jackets and coats. No longer do they have a bazillion jackets in the closet taking up space and not being worn during the school year.

Rule 4: Seek value over hype

My kids are encouraged to manage their own back-to-school shopping. We are upfront about the budget and let them participate in the spending of those dollars. This has taught them how to search out value over the next popular wardrobe item. They understand that clothing is a need, not a want, and we aren’t going to break the budget on clothes.

To drive home this lesson we often shop for back to school at JCPenney. They are known for their quality clothes from brands such as Levi’s®, and with the large selection, all my kids can shop at once.

Allowing my teens manage back-to-school shopping teaches them good stewardship and allows me to focus on other aspects of back-to-school planning.

That’s a win-win situation in my book.

This post is sponsored by Levi’s®.

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