Money for Kindergarten

Tags: kindergarten, money, ratios, lesson plan

Grade Level: kindergarten

Common Core: Kindergarten, Counting and Cardinality, Number and Operations in Base Ten

Concepts
1. Money has VALUE
2. Money has WEIGHT (penny = 1, nickel = 5, dime = 10, quarter = 25)
3. Money can be EXCHANGED

Value

The value of money must be taught as a "perception" to Kindergartners.  They must "perceive" the value of each individual coin.  This is really quite simple even though it works counter intuitive to what we know to be true.

Give each child 5 pennies.
Ask a child if they would like to exchange their 5 pennies for a nickel.
Ask the child why? ...or why not?

Weight
The weight of money is not as simple.  Teaching it depends upon the numbers skill of your Kindergartners.

Generally start with the 5 pennies again.
Repeat removing 1...until there are 0 pennies left.  Make sure to write each number on the board as you remove 1.
This time Repeat by adding 1 each time.  Remember to write the Money unit on the board.

Exchanging Money

The act of exchanging money for items can be a confusing task for Kindergartners.  Make sure that you do not "penalize" their concept of Money Weight by removing partial amounts.  For now we should stick to removing 5 pennies at a time.

Have parents each bring $1 of pennies to the class per Kindergartner.
Each day that a child is "good", "on green", etc. have the child take home 1 penny.
Ask the children to save these pennies in a jar at home (or alternatively place in a seperate jar called "the bank"...one per student).
When "the bank" has ALL of the pennies or you have reached the end of the school year...allow the child to "purchase" something in a "treasure bucket" such as a sticker, Teen Titans playing cards, erasers, pencils, etc.  This can also be done at the end of a 5 day week or once a child reaches 5 pennies.

Teaching general Money Concepts