Before diving into the rising world of freelance, I previously worked as an early childhood teacher for children aged 5 to 12. I can encapsulate my teaching experience with a single word – fulfilling. One of the most profound lessons that I absorbed was that children learn best when they are having fun. You may let them think they are playing a game with an underlying agenda. For instance, you may turn counting into entertaining games for your family.
Games like these act as great teaching tools for parents and guardians alike. It ignites a kids’ curiosity and encourages them to ask questions about money.
1. ASSORTED CURRENCY MAGNETS
Many Singaporeans have a hobby of collecting magnets from the countries that they previously visited. Mimic this concept by plastering currency magnets into your fridge. Begin by purchasing self-adhesive magnets online (for about S$28.39) or on Daiso (for as low as S$2). Attach the adhesive to the back of the 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents. Make another set by attaching the adhesive on the coins’ front side of coins with the same denominations. You can complete different activities with these currency magnets.
On the first challenge, you may ask your child to match the coins’ backs with their fronts. The second challenge may entail your child to “pay” for every favor or toy that he or she asks.
2. AMAZING UNO CARDS
Teach your kid about the basics of counting and recognizing numbers by buying the UNO cards. UNO is not your average matching game! It is a card game that entails color, number, and symbol coding. The premise is too straightforward that your child will be able to absorb it right away. Alternatively, you may modify the instructions to suit your child’s level of thinking.
For instance, you may ask your 3-year-old child to match the cards that have the same number and color. Keep track of the winner by employing a point system.
3. MAKE YOUR OWN CASH
Art is one of the children’s main modes of communication. So, communicate to your children in a language that they understand by letting them design their own versions of the dollar notes. Whose faces shall they feature? What buildings or infrastructures shall they put at the back?
Provide different art materials and get them to think creatively!
4. SHOP ‘TILL YOU DROP
Gather at least 8 toys and place a price tag on each one. Divide your Singapore notes and coins to your children and let them decide which toys they want to “buy”. In this round, you are the cashier or the owner of the shop. Mix and match the prices of the items and the roles of the players (e.g., your children are the co-owners while you shop).
This fun activity will help your kids to figure out the best way to divide and spend their cash.