Teaching kids about money can be a little challenging. When you give them a penny, a nickel and a dime and say how much do you have, chances are, you will get an answer of 3. But keeping this in mind and the fact that children learn best by doing what they are interested in, we can find creative ways of teaching about money. One of the best ways I have found to teach about money is to have the children create their own shop, restaurant, or some other type of business to give them practical experience with how money is actually used in everyday life. Children love to imitate what they see mommy or daddy do.
First of all, allow the children to choose what kind of business they want to open and help them gather the materials they will need. Prepare an area that can stay set up for a few days (or weeks if that is how long it holds the childrens' interests). Make sure to use props that will create a feeling of reality. Let the children make signs and tags for items with the price on them. Also, you can have them make nametags for different jobs within the store/restaurant. This will also incorporate literacy skills and recognizing numbers. Get a cash register and fill it with play money. Make sure each child has some play money to buy what they want and have them alternate between being cashier and customers. Allow the children to act out their jobs how they want to, but make sure you facilitate their learning by showing them how to count money and telling them how much each coin or bill is worth and demonstrating how a transaction takes place. This is a really fun activity for the kids and they may take in their own direction that you wouldn't have thought of. Just go with it and find any opportunity you can to extend their learning!