Cashing in

8 - 10 years
Ideas to help your child practise their numeracy skills - with you, and online
handfull of coins

Developed in partnership with Education Services Australia

The Australian Curriculum sets the goal for what all students should learn as they progress through their school life. Skills in the Year 3-4 curriculum include:

  • knowing that 100 cents makes 1 dollar
  • recognising combinations of coins that are of equal value (for example, five 20-cent coins are equal in value to 1 dollar)
  • counting change to the nearest 5 cents
  • recognising that other countries have different currencies.

It’s easy to help your child practise these skills as part of everyday life – just use these simple ideas.

Take cash

Even with the increase of electronic transactions, it’s still important for your child to be comfortable with using cash and working out change. Here are some ways you can help your child:

  • give them practice at paying with cash – eg getting the right money out for you, feeding it into the parking machine or handing it over to the cashier
  • give them practice with change – eg working out how much change there should be, counting how much change you get
  • encourage your child to play shopping games with your spare coins, or a set of toy money or tokens
  • if your child wants to buy something from their own money, talk about it

    How much would that cost? What coins could you use to pay for that? How much change would you get? How much money would you have left?
  • play the Coin Challenge:

    Start with a set of Australian coins.

    One person sets a random price (eg $4.85).

    The other person has to select coins to make that amount.

    To increase the challenge, one player can add a condition for the other player – eg you can’t use a 50-cent coin, or you have to use more than eight coins. But be careful – if you impose a condition that it’s impossible to meet, you lose that round!
  • if you have the opportunity, give your child money from other countries and talk about how it compares with Australian money
  • if your child is interested, help them set up and run their own market stall at a suitable opportunity, such as a family get-together. Help your child think about what their potential customers might like to buy (eg artworks, cookies, head massages), how much to charge, and how to promote their products or services. Your child might turn out to be a budding entrepreneur!

Go online

For online reinforcement, Funny money will give your child practice at:

  • learning the different coins and notes that make up our money system
  • understanding that other countries have different currencies.



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Last modified
7 April 2020