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Tuesday, April 25, 2017


State standards vary as to when money is introduced.  The reality is that money is a part of all our lives, and it just make sense to talk about it.  I've heard teachers comment, "That isn't part of our curriculum.  We can't do it."  Your standards represent the baseline of what you should teach in your classroom.  It's always good to raise the bar because sooner or later everyone needs to know about money.  Prior learning (or exposure) before something is introduced formally can be very meaningful.

This is one of my favorite songs about money.  It's just a "catchy" tune that the kids enjoy singing.  However, one day I got a phone call from a mother who said I was making children "capitalists" and "greedy" with my song.  I think sometimes adults take a little song too seriously.  That being the case you can change the words to "Let's learn some more" instead of singing "I always want more."

Money Song (Tune: “Shortnin’ Bread” Is Everybody Happy? CD)
Chorus: I like money to buy things at the store. (Point to self.)
Money, money, money,  (Open and close fists.)
I always want more! (Palms up and shake.)

A penny’s worth one cent. (Hold up 1 finger.)
A nickel’s worth five. (Hold up 5 fingers.)
A dime’s worth ten cents. (Hold up 10 fingers.)
A quarter’s twenty-five. (Open and shut hands for 25.)

Lincoln’s on one cent.
Jefferson’s on five.
Roosevelt’s on ten cents.
Washington’s on twenty-five.

A building’s on one cent.
A building’s on five.
A torch is on ten cents.
An eagle’s on twenty-five.

Note!  All things change.  Some of the coins minted now have different figures on them than in the song.  Use this as a "teachable moment" to talk about the differences.  

*For homework have children ask their parents if they know who is on the penny, dime, nickel, and quarter.  They will be tickled to know something that their parents don't know!

Change Please
Draw four square on a file folder. Label with “penny,” “nickel,” “dime,” and “quarter.” Give children a coin purse with change and ask them to sort the coins. Can they count the total amount?

Have children do rubbings of coins. Tape coins under a sheet of paper and rub with the side of a crayon. (Roll tape and put it on the back of the coins to keep them from sliding around.) Who do they see? What’s it worth? 
*Let children examine coins with a magnifying glass. Encourage them to discuss details. How old is the coin?
Money Tree
Does money really grow on a tree? Where does money come from?  Brainstorm how you pay for things when you go to a store? Do your parents use dollar bills, checks, or credit cards? Run off pretend checks for the children to fill in. Let children make play credit cards by cutting 2” x 3 ½” rectangles out of Styrofoam plates.
Coin Value Song 
Here's a clever song that Paris Garrett came up with to the tune of “Who Let the Dogs Out?”
Who let the penny out?
1, 1, 1, 1 (Hold up one finger.)
Who let the nickel out?
5, 5, 5, 5 (Hold up five fingers.)
Who let the dime out?
10, 10, 10, 10 (Both hands up.)
Who let the quarter out?
25, 25, 25, 25 (Two fingers on one hand and five fingers on the other.)