Sunday, 27 March 2011

Money, money, money!

We've reached the first lesson on money with RSM.  Emily had been eye-ing the plastic play coins which came with our RSM materials since the very first day, and she was pleased when we finally reached a lesson involving the use of coins.

I'd read ahead and realised that we probably could not use the coins provided because we do not use pennies, nickels and dimes in Singapore, and I wanted the money lessons to relate to real-life situations which Emily will encounter here.  Thankfully, my mother had saved a whole box of 1-cent, 5-cent and 10-cent coins and she kindly provided me with a good selection of these coins. 

I first got Emily to sort the different coins into sauce dishes:

I then wrote some values on our whiteboard and Emily placed the corresponding coins next to the different values.  For some numbers, she needed to use her abacus to visualise the numbers, but overall, she had no great difficulty doing this exercise:

We then swopped roles.  I placed coins on the whiteboard, while Emily wrote how much the coins were worth. 

In a way, the coins are just another category of manipulatives.  Emily is now used to seeing numbers under 10 as "5 plus something" and her RSM abacus reinforces this concept using the different coloured beads.  As such, expressing coin values from 0 to 10 cents isn't at all difficult for her.

While we're on the topic of the RSM abacus, it is really proving to be a useful tool.  Emily uses it to partition values ("5 is made up of 3 and 2") and to add ("4 and 1 is 5") and is getting more and more confident with her part-whole circle worksheets.

Soon, we'll have to solve some simple money problems - I can't wait to see how she gets on with that! 


  1. This is an important lesson in helping her understand how her shares are doing in the market!

  2. Thanks, Sharon! I really want to teach her a bit more about bank accounts and interest at some stage. I'm not sure I understand enough about shares to teach about that though!