Short Blocks

Maths Year 1 Spring Money

Each unit has everything you need to teach a set of related skills and concepts.

Unit 1 Use coins to pay amounts and find totals (suggested as 3 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Make labels 11p, 12p, 15p and 20p and attach to food items. Give each pair of children a pot of 1p, 2p, 5p, 10 and 20p coins, several of the smaller denominations. Show different items; children show you coins to pay for each 1. Discuss.
Group Activities
Use the ‘Mr Know It All’ in-depth problem solving investigation below as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
-- Guess the coins in each pocket, using the clues.
-- Buy food, working out which coins they would use to pay for it.

Day 2 Teaching
Have a selection of toys with prices 1p to 11p. Choose 2 items. Show children an enlarged 0-20p money line and use this to model counting on. Children start with the larger and count on the smaller price.
Group Activities
-- Buy two or three items, using number facts or counting on to find totals.

Day 3 Teaching
Show children items with price labels 67p, 42p, and 56p. Say that all these prices are going to go up by 10p! What's a quick way to add 10p? Spider counting. Show a 1-100 grid. Model counting on 10p to find new prices.
Group Activities
-- Find prices for the car wash, adding 10p, 20p or 30p to amounts.

You Will Need

  • Food items, labels with money amounts
  • Coins and pots
  • Mini whiteboards and pens
  • Selection of toys with price labels or use ‘Toy Shop’ sheet (see resources)
  • 0-20p money line (see resources)
  • Items for a class shop with price tags
  • Selection of objects with price labels
  • Large 1-100 number square and plastic spider
  • Toy cars, sticky labels and tuff spots/trays with shallow water
  • Bubble bath and toothbrushes

Mental/Oral Maths Starters

Day 1
Coin recognition (pre-requisite skills)

Day 2
Make amounts up to 10p (pre-requisite skills)

Suggested for Day 3
Count in 10s from a 1-digit number (simmering skills)


Day 1
Choose which coins to use to buy food items.

Day 2
Choose two or three toys to buy. Use number facts to help find the total.

Day 3
Add 10p, 20p or 30p to different amounts.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • Find 2 different ways of making each amount.
    Draw the coins you use.
  • Write the missing numbers:
    8p + 12p = ☐
    6p + ☐ = 13p
    ☐ = 13p +3p + 6p
  • Add amounts to write the missing totals in the table.

In-depth Investigation: Mr Know it All
Children find out which amounts of money from 10 to 20p can be made using 10p, 5p, 2p, and 1p coins, using no more than one of each.

Unit 2 Find change; differences between amounts (suggested as 2 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Discuss the concept of ‘change’. We give the shopkeeper too much. She gives us change. Model buying an 8p pencil using 10p. Encourage children to use their number bonds to 10 to help. Repeat for other prices and change.
Group Activities
-- Role-play shops and work out how much change to give.

Day 2 Teaching
Choose 2 objects and give them a price – make each price using a stack of pennies. Compare and work out the extra pennies 1 item costs. Show a 0 to 20p money line, mark on the 2 prices. Ring the extra pennies of the larger price.
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation ‘Find the Difference’ from NRICH as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
-- Find amounts that have a difference of 2p, 4p and 5p.
-- Find the difference in cost between two items.

You Will Need

  • Coins and pencils with price labels
  • 0-20p money line (see resources)
  • Items priced between 10p and 20p
  • Price tags under 10p on IWB or on tables
  • Sticky notes
  • Mini-whiteboards and pens


Day 1
Count up to find change from 10p or from different amounts.

Day 2
Count up to calculate the difference in price between two items.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • Write the change from 10p when buying…
    (i) 6p biscuit
    (ii) 4p cracker
    (iii) 9p drink
  • True or false?
    You always get change if you pay for something with a 10p coin.
    You can buy two 4p sweets and still have change from 10p
    You may not use a 20p coin to buy something that costs 11p.
  • What does a pen cost if I get 5p change when paying for it using a 10p coin?

In-depth Investigation: Find the Difference
Place the numbers 1 to 6 in a pyramid of circles so that each number is the difference between the two numbers just below it. Find the Difference from