Lesson: Snack Store
Concept: Money Management / Critical Thinking / Addition-Subtraction
Works Best for: Kindergarten-2nd grade aged children
This is a great lesson to pull out during the summer months for a refresher, or during the school year (especially if your child(ren) are struggling with the concept of money.
Procedure: Set up a tray (or your table) with a variety of snack foods. Give your child five dollars to spend. Price each snack differently, and in a way that causes the child(ren) to evaluate which is the best value for their money. (Ie-price a handful of grapes at a higher price, and a large bowlful of popcorn at a lower price. The child would need to figure out that they would get more for their money if they bought the popcorn.)
Extend the Lesson: Have your child justify their choices to you.
Modify the Lesson: If a group of siblings are playing the game, you can keep the money amount the same, and have them evaluate the choices in terms of what is the best value for the group. (Ie- If an apple was priced at $4, they could buy it, but would have to split it several ways, and might not have enough left to purchase something else, etc.)
You can also change the dollar amount/prices in this lesson. If your child is working with change/coins in school, this would be a great lesson to help reinforce coin value. Give your child two or three dollars in coins, making sure to give them some of each coin type. Price your snack items in such a way that the child will have to combine different coins to purchase the item.