Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer Learning Series: Money

Every child loves summer. Summer is a time for playing outside, swimming in the pool, and hanging out with your friends. Unfortunately, summer is also a time when kids lose a lot of what they learned during the previous year of school. As an elementary school teacher, it was frustrating to watch my students struggle at the beginning of each year with objectives that they had mastered the previous year. As a parent, I want to make sure that this doesn’t happen to my children. This summer, I will be setting aside a little time each day for some fun learning activities for my kids.  Hopefully, they will have so much fun they won't be worried about practicing their reading, writing, and arithmetic! 

Last week, my girls and I played a new game using bathroom cups and pretend money. It was our own personal version of Memory, but we’d love to share it with you all. Just like any version of Memory, make sure to adjust it to match your child’s learning level. First I will give you an overview of the version we played and then I’ll give you some ideas for alternate ways to play.

First start with about 12 bathroom cups. In each pair of cups, put an equal amount of coins. For example, if one cup has 5 pennies, then the second cup should have a nickel. If one cup has a dime, the other cup could have 2 nickels, 1nickel and 5 pennies, or even 10 pennies. You can make any combinations you like, just make sure they are even.

Next, turn the cups over and mix up the pairs. The kids will then take turns picking up two cups to see if they have a match. I made my kids identify the coins and their values before they could pick up their second cup. If the values under the two cups are equal, they made a match and get to keep their pair. The person with the most matches wins!

To make it easier, have only one coin under each cup. Play like you would any other memory game, but work on either identifying the coin or its value (or both). To make it harder, add more cups or make the winner the person with the most money at the end. By adding this element, the kids will have to strategize on which cups they want to uncover and will have to practice adding up all their money in the end.

1 comment:

blueviolet said...

That's a real thinking game. Very good skill building activity!