Teach Your 2-3 Year Old About Money in a Fun Way

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Image from Pixabay via NikolayF

Introducing your young ones to the understanding of money is a thing that can begin at a fairly early age. Many parents are worried because children don’t typically learn their numbers until they begin school around age 4. However, 2-3 year-old youngsters are quite able to realizing that money is used to buy things, even when they don’t quite understand value. As with many new concepts, the easiest method to use with your child is through play.

Have your child set up a shop in a room in the house. Using play money, you can start off with coins. Your child will quickly grasp the concept that you exchange a coin for an item in the shop. As they come to terms with this idea, you can progress to including paper money. Again, start simple; one paper note for one item from their shop. You could even make a fake cash register so that the child can get used to storing their money in one location.

As the child becomes comfortable with paper and coin money, you can introduce the idea of value. Small items are one paper note, while big items are two paper notes. This can be a stumbling block for many 2-3 year olds, so be patient. They will eventually get their head around it. You could also introduce the idea of change – one paper note gets one coin of change. Through this simple play activity, children can slowly come to terms with the idea of exchanging money for items.

Following on from this, you could play the sorting game with two different types of coin. At first, start with distinctly colored coins, and ask the child to separate them into their respective piles. Another encouraging tactic is to take your child shopping with you. At first they can observe you paying for your shopping with your money, just like you do in their shop. If the child shows an understanding of this concept, you can even encourage them to pay for their own item. For example, if they wish to buy an apple, let them hand money over to the shopkeeper for their apple and receive their change.

These basic skills all contribute towards a solid understanding of the concept of money, and will make it much easier to establish a healthy and responsible attitude towards money as they grow up. Children who learn about money at a young age are far more open to the idea of saving money as they grow up – a concept that is unfortunately rare amongst young adults these days. By starting them early, you are helping to establish a responsible attitude towards money in later years.