Art teacher Fran is painting kids' faces at the school fair for 50 cents each. But Jessie has only three dimes, a nickel and four pennies, which is just 39 cents. So Fran puts out a "penny pot" for spare change. Miguel has a quarter, a nickel, two dimes and three pennies: 53 cents. He adds three cents to the penny pot. All the other kids contribute, too. Soon there's more than enough for Jessie. Learning what different coins are worth and adding up change are important life skills. Illustrated by Lynne Cravath.
Place a handful of coins on the table and talk about the value of each. Ask questions such as: "Which coin is a dime?" "How many pennies equal a dime?" "How many nickels?" "Can you combine pennies and nickels to make a dime?"
Reread the story together and ask your child or class to identify the different coins in the story and tell how much each is worth.
Practice using coins in everyday situations: Help your child or students choose the coins needed to buy a magazine or a candy bar. Ask the child to help find the correct change needed to ride the bus, buy a stamp, or purchase a gumball from a machine.
Before we read "The Penny Pot," I ask my kids, “How many different combinations can you make using 25 cents?” The answer is 13 different ways. The kids can use money if they choose to and write out how they came to the answer. A lot of them can do it in their heads. When I read the book, they can see the computations.
from Richard Callan, Bunker Hill Elementary School, Indianapolis, IN
Counting coins is the topic of this Level 3 book in the MathStart series, which introduces youngsters to math concepts in a picture-book format. Jessie wants to get her face painted at the school fair, but it costs 50 cents and she has only 39. Fran, the art teacher who is doing the face painting, puts out a penny pot for people to put their extras coins in, and Jessie sits down to wait. Each of Jessie's school-mates who visits the table counts his or her coins. The coin combinations for each transaction are clearly pictured, with numbers below the coins showing the addition. The math concept is nicely woven into the lighthearted plot, and Cravath's colorful cartoon illustrations match the story's playful tone while successfully conveying the counting concept. Besides being instructional and fun, this book, like others in the series, demonstrates real-life applications for math concepts.
—Lauren Peterson, 2/15/98
Used with permission from Booklist. Copyright ¬© 1998 American Library Association. All rights reserved.
Jessie would love to have her face painted at the school fair but it cost 50 cents. All she has in her pocket are three dimes, one nickel, and four pennies, only 39 cents in total. Fran, the face-painter, tells her to wait and see what extra change people will pu in her penny pot. As the afternoon wears on, Jessie watches the coins in the penny pot accumulate until there is just enough to make up the remaining 11 cents. Each time Fran has a customer, the coins that are paid are shown in the illustration in life size sothe reader can count along with the characters in the book. This math story has a light tone, fun illustrations, and the fair setting will entice young mathematicians to solve the coin problem.
—Sally J. K. Davies
Used with permission from Children's Literature Comprehensive Database, www.childrenslit.com
All images on this website are copyright protected.
Text copyright © 2003 Stuart J. Murphy,
unless otherwise noted. MathStart ® is a registered trademark of HarperCollins Publishers.