How to Stop Hating School Carnivals

How to Stop Hating School Carnivals

Attending events at your child's school can be tough as a parent. Get some advice here!

By GoodNCrazy, Carissa Rogers, for

Hate School Carnivals? Well, Hate No More!

Do fall school fundraisers get you down? The experts at VolunteerSpot are hearing a lot of naysayers out there.

“Carnivals are too chaotic to bring younger siblings.”

“The fun-factor at festivals is offset by the cost-factor!”

At the risk of sounding like a grumpy old man, one blogger put it this way:

“Attempting to meander through throngs of people who are likely less clueless than I am about what they are doing, all while pushing a stroller for a few hours is what Dante should have named one of his Hell levels. Add to that, the bigger kids taking advantage of my five-year-old's passive nature relative to line-breaking etiquette, and I'm unimpressed. I'll eventually be chasing my two-year-old, who does his best to disappear in the crowd like an escaped convict, since we made the rookie mistake of releasing from the confines of the stroller. Meanwhile my husband is trying to give CPR to the goldfish we spent $57 to win while the older son cries because his new pet is suddenly belly up. No. Thanks.”

—Tricia Oakes of Southern Spark

RELATED: Confessions of an Irrational, Control-Freak Mom

Schools work hard to create a fun, festive atmosphere at their fall fundraisers and we’re here to help your family enjoy them for what they’re meant to be!

6 Tips to Help You Walk Away Loving the Fall School Fundraiser:

1. Budget It: Set an allowance for kids to spend at the fundraiser. Keep money in separate envelopes for each child to make it easier to track who has spent what, and how much they have left. Encourage them to spend wisely; help them know their limits.

2. Time It: Allot a specific amount of time for your family to enjoy the big day – whether two hours or four, have a conversation beforehand with the family and be specific about when everyone should gather to leave.

3. Bag It: Save yourself the time of stuffing your purse full of prizes, and inevitably losing them by bringing your own re-usable bag to the event. Hold tickets, prizes and candy for safe travel back home.

4. Help It: Get in your school volunteer hours by supervising a game booth, taking tickets, or serving concessions. *Serve from home by helping organize volunteers with free online sign up sheets*

RELATED: How to Volunteer at School From Home-10 Tips

5. Swap It: Adding to the collection of dollar store toys with carnival winnings is not conducive toward your house-cleaning duties. Encourage kids to fill a box of gently used toys and donate to a nearby shelter or collection center before they come home with new ones.

6. Feed It: Spend less money on concessions and carnival goodies by filling the family bellies before leaving the house. A healthy snack or meal will prevent the kids from craving sugar and keep their energy up for more games!

Bonus Tip: Don't miss VolunteerSpot's free Carnival eBook with game and booth ideas, volunteer management tips, and festival fundraising best practices!

What do you most dislike about school carnivals?
What do you LOVE about school fairs or festivals?

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This article was originally published at Reprinted with permission from the author.