Category Archives: Letter M

Money Talks – Coin Discrimination Task for Beginners

I’m loving doing a letter a week for Noah.  Coming up with fresh activities that match the alphabet letter we are on keeps my mind buzzing.  The only problem is all that searching for activities is cutting into my blogging time, so I’m doing new activities with Noah faster than I can blog about them.  This week’s letter is B, but last week’s M-money exercise was so successful, I’ve just gotta share.   Don’t our children just love getting their hands on the things they see their parents use every day, like money?  (With the booming popularity of plastic, I’m sure I’ll have to come up with a worksheet to distinguish American Express from Discover cards, but let’s save that for another day.)  :)

By the way, being able to identify money is an important life skill for all of our children, and one certainly attainable by most children with autism, Down syndrome and other learning disabilities or challenges.

I whipped up this printable coin worksheet for Noah:

One of the things I’ve noticed with Noah is that he does not have the tolerance to do the same activity for very long, especially when it comes to preschool.  While I might expect Bella to match ten different coins at a sitting, my expectations for Noah are for him to match only five.  It’s still enough to demonstrate mastery, but it allows him to start a goal and reach that goal in a short amount of time.   With Bella, this coin matching activity is something I will do only once in a day with 10 coins to a page, but with Noah, I may do it once in the morning and once in the afternoon with five coins to a page.   So his goal is not necessarily different (the goal being to match 10 coins to 10 coins), it is just reached in a different manner (in two shorter sessions versus one longer session).

Activity:  Money Matching

Supplies: 

  1. Money Matching printable (click on above graphic)
  2. Three quarters, two pennies

Vocabulary:  Money, match, same, different, quarter, dime, silver, brown, big, little, circle.

Directions:

  1. Show your child the money and let him hold it.   Use the vocabulary listed above to describe the different coins.
  2. Take away the pennies, leaving your child with the quarters.
  3. Point to a quarter on the printable, and use this script or come up with your own:

“Put quarter on quarter.”

(Child complies.)

“Good.  You put quarter on quarter.  “Quarter”(move quarter slightly off the quarter on the page and point at the actual quarter and the printable quarter), “Quarter, same.”

(Repeat for the other two quarters.)

4.  Repeat the process with the pennies.

5.  When all the coins on the printable are covered correctly, review by having your child point to each coin (using hand-over-hand assistance if necessary), and say with you (if he is able, otherwise say it for him), whether it is a quarter or a penny.  For example, “Quarter, penny, penny, quarter, quarter.”

A Step Up:  If your child is still on board, now place all the coins in front of your child and have him match each physical coin to each printable coin independently, offering gentle correction in the form of questions like “Wait a minute, is THAT a QUARTER?” when necessary.  When your child is finished, have him point to each coin and name it as either a penny or a quarter.

Here’s the harder printable worksheet with 10 coins I use for Bella: