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The Foreign Currency Game
The Foreign Currency Game
Blogs » Mummy Blogger

The Foreign Currency Game

You may not have started planning your holiday yet this year, but here’s a fun way of getting your children familiarised with foreign currency...

Can you remember the first time you ever used foreign currency? How exciting it was, how it felt and looked and how you didn’t quite understand how it all worked. From a child’s eye view money is just money and it’s terribly difficult to comprehend the idea of there being different money depending on where you live in the world. Exchange rates were a complete mystery to me as a child and the idea of buying and selling money was something that I just couldn’t get my head around.

I lived in Germany for a fair amount of my childhood, commuting to and from the UK on an occasional basis but proper foreign holidays weren’t something that we did. Most children these days get the chance to travel at much earlier age, some more extensively than others, but all of them love the chance to play with different types of money.

What’s your favourite foreign currency? Mine still has to be Australian notes; just the fact that they’re waterproof is enough to guarantee their place at the top of my list. Anything that can survive going through the washing machine in your jeans pocket has to be a very good thing!

Regardless of the last time you went abroad we all seem have a stash of foreign currency in our sock drawers and cubby holes so here’s a fun way to make use of it all:

Gather up all of your old currency; get the children to help you, that’s part of the game. Spread it all out over the table and talk to your children about where each note and coin comes from. You could get out a world map and plot where it’s all from, tying it in with flags or landmarks that the country is famous for.

For your slightly older children turn it into a project. Get them to find out more about the countries themselves, the people, what they do, how their lifestyle compares to ours, and what the key differences are. They could look at national costumes and language then write down five things about each country that are unique or different to their own

For your youngsters, why not set up a shop? Price their goods using the currency symbols that you’ve found and try and explain how it differs to buying the same thing in sterling. Get online and find some simple phrases in the language for how to ask for a loaf of bread or some milk - what a great way to reinforce the early stages of learning a foreign language! Touch and feel the notes and coins and ask them to explain why they’re different from what they’re used to, what are the pictures and the colours and why do they think we need different types of currency.

Then it’s time to get your coats on and take them to the post office to exchange for cash!

Monday, 4th April 2011

Tags:   Parenting  /  Activities  /  Foreign Currency
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