Monday, November 30, 2009

10 Web Sites for Consumer Education

One of the most important subjects a student can learn is how to be a good consumer. Yet, in many schools this topic is rarely mentioned.

Once in a while, a class might be offered in Consumer Economics, where students learn to balance a checkbook and file their taxes, but this is the exception rather than the rule. A Consumer Mathematics class might offer students an opportunity to learn about amortization, interest rates, investments, and getting the best buy, but again this course is rarely offered, and if it was, it has probably been discontinued because of the emphasis on courses meeting state standards. Students taking business classes generally have an advantage over those who don't, but only a small percentage of students enroll in those courses.

One way to give students a helping hand in this area is for parents and teachers to take advantages of any and all learning
opportunities in consumer education. Today is the perfect time to start.

Today is CyberMonday. It is a day started in 2005 by the National Retail Federation to offer online specials and deals for shoppers. In the past, when few people had computers at home, they would shop online when they returned to work after the Thanksgiving break. Today, with many more shoppers having computers at home, over 100 million are expected to shop online, with 90% of the stores offering exceptional bargains.

This is a perfect time to sit at the computer with a child and teach them to shop sensibly and wisely. Show them the best web sites. Show them how to calculate shipping and handling and sales taxes. Yes, the web site will do this for you when you check out, but it still gives parents and teachers a chance to give kids a little bit of extra education, and that can never hurt.

Show students how to comparison shop. Have them calculate the best deals. Have them look at the features of similar items and make a decision as to which is the better buy, keeping in mind that the cheaper item may not be better for you if it doesn't have the features you want. And don't forget to teach about coupon codes and free shipping. Most web sites will give needed information about these, but you may have to search for them.

Some great web sites to start your child's consumer education are:

1. This web site sponsored by the National Retail Federation keeps track of the best deals online and is updated regularly during the day

2. Sponsored by MasterCard, this site gives financial advice and has a gift finder feature.

3. This web site will help you find coupon codes at over 40,000 stores that can help you save money.

4. When you're looking for online or printable coupons, this is a good place to start.

5. Coupon mom is great place to learn how to manage coupons. It also lists grocery coupons for most major grocery store chains. The work is done for you here.

. This is a great place to find free shipping coupons to 1854 stores.

7. This is the site for online coupon codes, discount coupons and online deals.

8. Pricespider crawls the web for hundreds of thousands of items each hour, then puts up the best deal on their site.

9. Pricegrabber allows you to compare prices of items and provides consumer reviews of those products.

10. Consumer Reports tests thousands of products, rates them, and gives recommendations.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for these great websites! I like to suggest It also offers a great collection of great deals.