Skip to main content

Gifts are expressions of love and appreciation, but it’s important to remember that meaningful gifts are based on intent, not high price tags.

Childhood is the perfect time to learn these lessons. It’s a time of learning how to express ourselves and navigate relationships, but it’s also a time where we don’t have access to much money. This holiday season, gather the kids together and turn the gifting process into a teachable moment about gift giving!

Begin with a Budget

Maybe the kids have earned some cash doing chores, maybe you’ve offered them a small gifting fund, or maybe they’re old enough to work outside the home. Sit down with pen and paper and help them create a budget. Begin with discussing how much they are able to spend overall. Next, make a list of everyone they would like to buy (or make) gifts for. Having a visual list will help your little budgeter decide how much they want to spend on each person. Even if they plan on crafting gifts themselves, they will want to account for any extra supplies that they can’t find around the house. Of course, don’t forget to factor in the price of wrapping paper and gift bags!

Brainstorm Ideas

Once the kids have their budget and their list of giftees, help them brainstorm gift ideas. Try to think of a few options for each gift recipient that fits within the budget. This is the part where your kids can work out their social skills. Encourage them to think about what is special to each person on their list. What common interests have they bonded over? These kinds of questions will help your kids think of personalized and thoughtful gift ideas. They may even stumble upon a DIY or second-hand gift that could mean more to the giftee than an item bought in a store at full retail price. Another great option is gifting an experience rather than an object. This could be anything from movie tickets, a visit to the museum, or a task-based coupon book.


Now that the kids have a budget and a list of gift ideas, help them shop, make, and imagine the smiles their gifts will create!