Playing while learning is often the best method to teach tough concepts. Here’s how I turned a miserable Math lesson about money skills into a fun one.
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The other day I was having quite a time teaching my 3rd grader how to give correct change. We were using Time4Learning.com – and the activity required her to be able to find the difference between a dollar amount given, and the price of an item, and then to give that difference in the smallest number of coins and bills possible. It is a life skill that every child should learn, and many grown-ups can’t even do it.
She wasn’t getting it on screen. And she wasn’t getting it on paper either. So we decided to play a little game.
I got out our toy cash register, some play money, and some random “grocery” items from my toddler’s play kitchen set. I made some purchases, and she told me how much each item cost. I gave her more than the amount required, and she learned to count the change back to me, finding the smallest number of coins and bills required. And we had fun!
Just an “Aha!” moment for us! Sometimes you just need to put down the workbooks, the online learning programs, and learn through pretend play. Even at 8 1/2 years old.