The fabulous Parent’s Jury got in touch recently, asking me to take part in an upcoming #KidsSuperSnaps campaign. From July 18-24 you’re invited to hand your camera to the kids and let them snap what they see at their local supermarket. Then you can tweet (hashtag #kidssupersnaps) or upload your images at the Parent’s Jury website. It’s part of their initiative to encourage supermarkets to make 50% of checkouts lolly-free zones and also to start a general discussion about how supermarkets target the kids.
Mr M&P recently reported that he wants to be a photographer when he grows up, so he was SUPER excited when I handed him my phone and told him he could go crazy. It was REALLY interesting. I have to say, he was just as happy shooting the fruit & veg (since that’s where we started) as the junk, and being a meat man he veered off quickly to his beloved butchery section and took most of his shots there.
At my supermarket right next door to the meat is the confectionery section and all those shiny wrappers proved irresistable to my budding artist. But by the end of that aisle he was bored and gave the camera back to me. Hmmmmmm.
Ever wonder why it is that supermarket aisles are placed the way they are? There’s a fantastic article all about it here. Who knew that “Counter-clockwise shoppers spend, on average, $2 more per trip, than do clockwise shoppers”. Perhaps we’re dizzier travelling that way? And all this time I thought I was a ‘smart’ shopper who zipped around the edges of the supermarket, darting down aisles to grab stuff, but actually, I’m entirely regular – that’s actually how the bulk of us shop. I’m gonna start watching folks more in the future to see if this is all true.
Anyway, it was a fun thing to do and the most peaceful trip in a while. Of course I only had one child with me, so there was no squabbling for the camera.
For me, this exercise emphasised a couple of points…
1. Kids look at whatever you’re looking at. So while we walk down the confectionery aisle (the breakfast cereal is on the other side), my kids don’t fixate on the lollies since they know that I’m not going to be buying any.
2. Supermarkets are full of all sorts of stuff and teaching the kids how to negotiate through good and bad food choices is essential if you want to raise healthy adults.
3. Kids have a short attention spans. Strategic shopping is best when you’ve got the kids with you. But you all already know this and I’m sure, like me, whenever possible, you leave the kids elsewhere when you need to do a large shop.
But if you do have to take them with you, then I reckon a visit with the camera is a pretty fun idea.
Here’s how we went…