How to Make a Personalized Coupon Book With Your Kids
Want a great gift for a birthday, holiday or any day?
Make a personalized coupon book filled with treats for someone you love.
In this article I’ll show you how to make a custom coupon book with your kids to give to someone special.
Fill it full of promises for treats like a special meal, a backrub, a car wash or an afternoon out with their favorite kid and you’ll have a thoughtful and easy present anyone will appreciate.
Why Make a Coupon Book?
A custom coupon book is as fun to make as it is to receive. The key is to make it personalized so the recipient knows it was created especially for him or her.
People love coupons. They get 2 for 1 deals, discounted items and free stuff. Coupons you make yourself are even better because the recipient can redeem them anytime for great things like time spent together, handpicked activities, special favors or chores and personalized presents from some pretty cool kids.
This coupon book gift project will encourage your kids to show how much they care for another person and give them a fun, creative project to make.
A gift from the heart is always most appreciated and this project is a great way to help your kids practice the values of generosity and thoughtfulness.
When you choose a present for someone, whether you buy or make it, it’s with that person’s interests in mind. When you select “gifts” for your coupon book, you put the needs and wants of the recipient in front of your own and make sure they’re things the recipient will want.
This project will also help teach kids to be responsible for carrying out the promises made in the coupons, even when they’re not necessarily things they like to do, like cleaning their rooms or preparing their least-favorite meal.
Those types of thoughtful gestures show the person who receives the coupon book that you really care, so it’s a great gift.
Let’s get going and make a personalized coupon book for someone special!
While a coupon book is an ideal gift for a holiday or birthday, it’s also a perfect way to say “thank you” or “I love you” any time.
#1: Choose the Recipient and “Gifts”
First things first: choose the recipient. Again, this can be a special-occasion coupon book or a present “just because.” After you’ve made one coupon book, your kids may have so much fun, they’ll want to include one in all future gifts.
So who’s the first recipient?
- Mom or Dad
- Grandma or Grandpa
- A sibling
- A teacher
- A friend
What’s the occasion?
The recipient can be located anywhere. If the recipient is out of town, you can drop the finished product in the mail. You’ll just have to be more creative with long-distance coupons, since you’ll have to find things he or she can redeem via mail, Internet or when you are in town visiting. Plan accordingly.
If the gift is for a parent or a grandparent (and there are multiple siblings), you might want to make a group coupon book from the whole family.
Once you’ve decided who will receive the gift, discuss what things that person likes.
Here are some questions to kick off the conversation:
- What does the recipient like to do for fun?
- What’s the recipient’s favorite TV show or movie?
- What’s the recipient’s favorite color?
- What’s the recipient’s favorite animal?
- What are some games the recipient likes to play?
- What are the recipient’s favorite foods?
- Are there some places the recipient likes to visit?
- What kinds of books does the recipient like to read?
- What kinds of outdoor activities does the recipient like to do?
Take pen to paper and make a list of things you came up with during the conversation. Have older kids write the list themselves. Younger ones might need some help. Or they can draw pictures.
Next, make a list of things your children can do for the recipient to make him or her happy.
- Give hugs and kisses
- Draw pictures
- Sing songs
- Pick wildflowers
- Set the table
- Clean the house
- Play nicely with siblings
- Help weed the garden
Make sure your kids don’t include their current, regular responsibilities (chores). The coupons should offer things over and above their normal daily tasks.
Once you have your lists, start designing the coupon book. If you think of more ideas during the design phase, just add them to the list.
#2: Design Your Book
There are several ways to construct the coupon book: use a notebook, note cards or individual sheets of paper.
The easiest way is to use a small spiral notebook and write out each coupon on one of the pieces of paper. The recipient can rip out each coupon as it’s used.
You can also use separate pieces of paper or note cards to make your book. Lined paper, copy paper or construction paper all work well. If the paper is large, cut it into smaller pieces.
Write out your coupons, one per sheet, and staple them together. That way, the recipient can easily tear out one coupon at a time.
Give your book a personalized cover. The cover of a spiral notebook is often challenging to write on, so personalize the first page inside the notebook instead or create a design on a piece of construction paper and tape it onto the cover of the notebook.
If you’re going to use pieces of paper or note cards, use cardstock or different-colored paper for your cover.
On the cover page, include a title that has the recipient’s name, the giver’s name and the occasion.
For instance, write:
- Coupons for Father’s Day! With love from his little munchkin
- Happy Mother’s Day to the best mom in the world! Love, Joe
- To Ms. Lincoln, from her class. Thanks for a great year!
Once you design your book, write out the coupons.
#3: Create the Coupons
Take another look at the lists you made at the beginning of this project. Figure out how to turn each thing the recipient enjoys into a special present.
Sit back and let kids brainstorm. They may come up with something really creative that you’d never considered!
Here are some categories of “gifts,” along with ideas for how to turn a favorite thing into a coupon.
- Do something fun: Is her favorite color red? Give her a coupon that says, “On the day of your choice, I will give you a spa day and paint your nails red.”
- Read to him: Is his favorite animal a tiger? Give him a coupon that says, “Redeem this coupon for one tiger-themed story that I will read to you.”
- Cook for her: Does she like apples? Give her a coupon that says, “This coupon is good for one baked apple dessert—complete with cinnamon and maple syrup!”
- Show your love: Write out a coupon that says, “This coupon is good for two hugs and three kisses from me, redeemable even if I’m mad at you.”
- Help around the house: What parent doesn’t appreciate a good helper? Make a coupon that says, “Good for one super-clean playroom. Includes vacuuming.”
- Make him laugh: Does he love it when you act silly? Create a coupon that says, “Good for three knock-knock jokes, guaranteed to make you smile.”
Although some of the above can be redeemed long-distance, here are a few additional ideas for coupons that can be turned in across the miles:
- Draw a picture: “Whenever you want, I will draw a picture just for you.”
- Special bonding time: “This coupon is good for a special phone or Skype call… just the two of us.”
- Sing a song: “I’ll call you and sing a song of your choice.”
- Write a story: “I will write a story for you on any topic you choose.”
- Send a photo or video: Think of something the recipient would love to see your child doing—a shared hobby or talent, a lesson, skill or sport—and make a coupon promising to send a photo or video of it.
Get creative! See what else you can come up with. It’s a fun way to stretch your creativity.
If you run out of ideas, you can always repeat a few. Hugs and kisses or helping out around the house—you can never have enough of either of those!
To make the individual coupons, write what the coupon is for on one side of each piece of paper. On the other side, use markers or crayons to draw a picture. The picture can be of what you’re offering in the coupon—for instance, you could draw a picture of yourself reading a book—or it can just be a design.
Another option is to print out meaningful photos from the computer and attach them to the coupons.
If you’re using separate pieces of paper instead of a spiral notebook, staple everything together once you’ve finished writing and decorating your coupons. (Younger kids may need to be supervised with the stapler.)
If you want the recipient to keep the book intact instead of ripping out the coupons, put a sticker on each coupon to mark it as it’s “redeemed.”
#4: Give Your Book
Your personalized coupon book can be given on a special day, like someone’s birthday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or another holiday. But you can also make one for someone just because he or she means a lot to you and give it whenever you want.
If you are handing the coupon book to someone, bring along a camera. You’ll want to capture and treasure the smile it brings to the recipient’s face.
If you’re mailing it, ask the recipient to make a video of him or her leafing through the book. It will be a fun gift for you in return to see how happy you’ve made this person with your meaningful gift.
Some Final Thoughts…
One of the best things about a personalized coupon book is that the coupons can be redeemed over time. Prolong the fun by spreading out the redemption process throughout the year—or even longer.
Sometimes I like to surprise my children by redeeming coupons they made for me several years before. And my kids always make good on their offers!
What do you think? Who will get your first personalized coupon book? For which holiday? How will you design it? What creative coupons did you dream up? Let me know in the comments below. And feel free to post pictures of your books or the recipient’s smiling face.
Holly (@HollyChessman) is the co-founder of bozmyn, the secure, private, family-friendly social sharing site that lets you share what you want with who you want – and only who you want. Other posts by Holly Chessman »