It's never too early to introduce your child to the math skills he'll need to manage his money in the future. When you help your little one craft a colorful bank for storing his change, he'll have a chance to develop his creative and counting abilities.
"Making a bank will help your child understand money and see the usefulness of arithmetic," says Lee V. Stiff, Ph.D., the president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. "And parents' involvement reinforces to children how important math is in everyday life."
Once the bank is completed, you can play a variety of money games with your child. Dr. Stiff recommends placing a certain number of pennies in the bank each play session -- for example, four one day, eight the next. "Then ask him how he could keep those 12 cents in his bank in the fewest number of coins possible." When he arrives at the solution, trade him the 12 pennies he saved for a dime and two pennies. As he works on solving this type of problem, he will begin to understand the value of each coin and improve his ability to add and subtract.Materials
- Empty coffee can or other canister with a plastic lid
- Tape measure
- Paper in various colors
- Crayons (optional)
- Rhinestones (optional)
- Craft knife
- 1/4"- to 3/8"-wide ribbon
- Fabric glue or hot glue gun