Play Plan : Market

General Information

Prerequisites: Number Identification
Number of players: 2 groups of up to 6 children in each

Game overview and basic rules for play

During the different sessions of this market game, children will have fun shopping and selling, while at the same time learning valuable money skills.

It is essential to have braille play money before beginning the sessions. To make play money, cut up braille paper into small rectangles. Then write down the values in Braille: 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 2000. Then make some small round coins to represent 1, 2, and 5 rupees. The coins can be represented as small rough circles of braille paper.

Play session plans

Session 1

  • Ask the children what they know about money. Why do people need money? What do people use it for? Have they ever handled money?
  • Introduce the play money to them. Distribute randomly among the class. Explain that real money is somewhat similar, but in print.
  • Ask each child what all denominations they got. Explain that these are the denominations available in real life as well.
  • Also talk to the children about their experiences around going shopping. Who did they go with, what did they buy, etc.
  • Now that the children are used to the currency they will be using for play, introduce them to their play area.
  • The play area can be a classroom, a Hall, or and outdoor space, as long as it is set up with stalls that the children can navigate around. Each stall, which could perhaps consist of a desk, could carry a certain type of play merchandise. For example, one desk could be the bookshop, another could be a grocery store, and yet another could be a toy shop. Make sure that there are 4-5 stalls for the children to navigate.
  • Now show the children around the area and make sure that they understand where each stall is located.
  • Gently quiz them about how to get from one stall to another. For example, how might a child go from the grocery shop, from where he has finished buying groceries, to the bookshop to buy books?

Session 2

  • Set up the play area as before. Make sure that all the stalls, furniture, etc are placed exactly as in the previous session.
  • Now, divide the children into 2 equal (or close to equal) groups. Tell them that they are going to play a shopping game. One group will act as the shopkeepers and the other will act as the customers.
  • Distribute equal amounts of money to the children who are the customers.
  • Each shopkeeper can sell a different item, such as books, toys, food items, etc. Have some real items ready at hand that they can pretend to sell.
  • As a class, discuss and decide what each item will cost.
  • The children can now go around and buy whatever they are interested in, and pay for them using the play money. Dealing in money, calculating change, etc are all the children can enjoy.
  • This time, help the children with calculations if they need help.
  • Switch the groups after a while so the the customers become the shopkeepers and vice versa.

Session 3

  • In this session, experiment with price tags for each item.
  • The children can help make the tags as a part of the session itself.
  • To make the tags, cut up braille paper into small, rectangular shaped pieces.
  • Discuss with the children about what could be possible prices of the items. It is essential to use realistic prices for the items, as the children may otherwise perhaps misunderstand the real price of items.
  • Now, tape / staple the tags onto the items.
  • Now, play as before, with one group of children pretending to be the shopkeepers and one pretending to be the customers.
  • Let each person figure out the prices from the tags and calculate their budget to see what items they can buy within their budget.
  • Switch the groups after a while so the the customers become the shopkeepers and vice versa.

Session 4

  • This time, play the game as before, but have the shopkeepers write up bills for their customers.
  • Have a billing counter, where the shopkeeper examines the price of each item, does the calculations, and writes up the total and gives it to customers as a bill.
  • The customer should look at the bill, double-check the items, and pay the total.
  • Conclude with a discussion of shopping at home, and how children can help in shopping.
  • Some other points of discussion can be the identification of currency by people who are blind and visually impaired, lack of labels in braille, etc.