Learning to count change is tough because it involves addition (with decimals!) and remembering that certain coins have specific values. Help your child become a master money-counter with this simple game. All it takes is half an egg carton, a handful of coins, and some construction paper. Soon you’ll be tossing paper wads into egg carton cups, adding money values and totaling scores to determine the winner!
What You Do:
- Place a coin in the bottom of each egg cup.
- Ask your child to help you make paper wads out of the colored scrap paper for this tossing game. Each of you can pick a different color paper and make 6 paper wads.
- Explain that you are going to take turns tossing your paper wads into the egg cups. Then you will count your points. The number of points for each cup is determined by the coin in the bottom—1 for a penny, 5 for a nickel, etc.
- First, let your child toss a paper wad, and then it's your turn. Keep going until you are both out of paper wads.
- Now, add up your score, explaining it as you go: “I got two in the penny cup, that’s two points. Then I had one in the dime cup for ten points.”
- Have your child take a turn now. Encourage her to add up her own points. Who's the winner?
As you play, ask your child which is better: the cup with the highest score or the cup that is easiest to hit? It may depend on which coin is in which cup.