Grade 3 Mathematics Lesson Plan: Introduction to Money

Lesson Plan Title:

Grade 3 Mathematics Lesson Plan: Introduction to Money

Materials Needed:

  • Play money (notes and coins)
  • Real or replica money (Rands: coins and notes)
  • Whiteboard and markers
  • Worksheets with money problems
  • Storybooks or pictures involving shopping scenarios
  • Calculator (optional)
  • Interactive whiteboard (optional)

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify different South African coins and notes.
  2. Understand the value of each coin and note.
  3. Add and subtract different amounts of money.
  4. Solve simple word problems involving money.
  5. Develop an understanding of making change and the idea of cost.


  1. Coin – A small, flat, round piece of metal used as money.
  2. Note – Paper money, also known as a banknote.
  3. Rand – The basic unit of currency in South Africa.
  4. Change – Money returned after paying for something with more than the exact amount.
  5. Value – The amount of money something is worth.

Previous Learning:

Students have learned basic addition and subtraction facts and have been introduced to counting and the concept of value in numbers. They may have had some informal exposure to money in everyday life but have not studied it formally.

Anticipated Challenges and Solutions:

  • Challenge: Difficulty in understanding the value of different coins and notes.
    Solution: Use real or replica money to have tangible objects for students to touch and see.
  • Challenge: Struggling with addition and subtraction of money.
    Solution: Provide lots of step-by-step practice opportunities and use visual aids.
  • Challenge: Difficulty in making change.
    Solution: Role-play shopping scenarios to practise making change in a fun and engaging way.

Beginning Activities (4 minutes):

  1. Introduction: Present different coins and notes to the class. Ask if any students have seen them before or used them and in what context.
  2. Learning objectives: Briefly explain what they will learn – identifying coins and notes, understanding their value, and simple calculations with money.

Middle Activities (32 minutes):

  1. Direct Instruction (10 minutes):
  2. Display each South African coin and note, explaining its value and any special features.

  3. Discuss the context in which each would be used (e.g., small items for coins, larger amounts for notes).

  4. Guided Practice (12 minutes):

  5. Distribute different coins and notes to small groups.
  6. Ask students to identify and sort them into groups in ascending order based on value.

  7. Demonstrate simple addition and subtraction problems using the coins and notes.

  8. Independent Practice (10 minutes):

  9. Hand out worksheets with money problems.
  10. Students complete problems involving adding amounts of money, subtracting amounts, and solving simple word problems.
  11. Circulate and provide support as needed.

End Activities (4 minutes):

  1. Exit Ticket Activity:
  2. Give each student a quick problem-solving question to solve involving money (e.g., “If you have R10 and you buy a toy for R6, how much change will you get back?”)
  3. Collect these to check their understanding.

Assessment and Checks for Understanding:

  • Observing students during group sorting activity.
  • Reviewing the completed worksheets to check for understanding of addition and subtraction with money.
  • Analysing responses to the exit ticket activity to identify any remaining misconceptions.

Differentiation Strategies for Diverse Learners:

  • Scaffolding: Provide visual aids and step-by-step instructions. Use number lines or charts for students struggling with basic calculations.
  • Extension Activities: For advanced students, introduce more complex problems, such as making change with larger amounts or involving multiple steps.
  • Support for ELL (English Language Learners): Use visual aids and bilingual dictionaries, if necessary. Pair ELL students with a peer who can assist them during the activity.
  • Special Needs: Use tactile money for hands-on practice. Provide one-on-one assistance and frequent breaks if needed.

Teaching Notes:

  • Emphasise the real-world application of this lesson by relating it to everyday activities like shopping.
  • Extended learning: Plan a mock shop where students can practise using money in a controlled environment.
  • Ensure clear visibility of all items, especially for students with visual disabilities. Using contrasting colours can help.
  • Consider integrating an interactive activity on the whiteboard using matching games, where students match the name of the coin or note with its picture and value to reinforce their learning.

Accessibility Considerations:

  • Use large print on worksheets for visually impaired students.
  • Ensure physical mobility by organising classroom space to accommodate wheelchairs.
  • Utilise auditory aids for students with hearing impairments. Use clear speech and repeat instructions if necessary.

By the end of this lesson, students should feel more confident in recognising and using South African money and solving basic problems involving money.

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