Grocery Shopping

By Activity Bank on Sep 11, 2013

This activity has been revised and was originally created by Mary Jane Clark and published in the Perkins Activity and Resource Guide (1st edition, 1992).  The second edition is available for purchase.

Grocery shopping is an activity that incorporates a number of skills, including reading, categorizing, estimating, sorting, and understanding the value of money. This activity takes students through the steps to plan and execute a trip to the grocery store. Lessons include English Language Arts, Math and Independent Living Skills.


  • List making items (brailler, digital recorder, or items for making a picture list)
  • Labels or packaging of items to buy
  • Money



  • When planning a meal, have the student make a list of the items that will be needed for the cooking activity. A student who has difficulty writing may record the list into a digital recorder, or choose the correct picture or label of the item and make a pictorial list instead.
  • Have the student select the correct number of items by following verbal directions or reading a shopping list.


  • After making a list of items, have the student determine which items may be found in the same part of the store, such as all cleaning products, all baking needs, all dairy products, etc.
  • Have the student participate in a categorizing activity following a trip to the store. Possible questions might include: What did you find in the produce section? In the frozen food section?

Money Skills

  • Allow the student to pay for items purchased at the store. Have him select the correct number of bills needed from a wallet. Use all one dollar bills until the student understands the concept of five, ten and twenty dollar bills.
  • Set up real-life situations to help the student understand the value of money. Using a classroom store, have the student role-play paying for items. The student can add up the amount spent versus the number of items purchased.


Begin with a small local grocery store and work up to a full-size grocery store. Using a small shopping list, have the student estimate the cost of each item to determine how much money to take to the store.

Collage of kitchen prep for students who are blind or visually impaired

Read more about: Math, Independent Living, STEM, Transition