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How Do You Count Money?


Before you learn how to use your money to buy and sell things, you have to learn how to count the money. Counting money is similar to counting normal numbers, but you need to know which coins and banknotes to use to get to the sum you want.

When you are counting money, it is important to remember that the different coins and bills have different values.

Here is a list of the different coins, and what we call them:

  • 1 ¢ = cent, penny;

  • 5 ¢ = nickel;

  • 10 ¢ = dime;

  • 25 ¢ = quarter, quarter dollar;

  • 50 ¢ = fifty cent piece, half dollar;

  • $1 = dollar coin.

Here are some examples of the relationships between different coins and bills:

Relationship between different coins and bills

Example 1

You have four quarters, two dimes and seven pennies in your pocket. How much money do you have?

Four quarters = 4 25¢ = $1 Two dimes = 2 10¢ = 20¢ Seven pennies = 7 1¢ = 7¢ In total, that is

$1 + 20¢ + 7¢ = $1.27,

which means you have $1.27 in your pocket.

Example 2

You have one $5 bill, three half dollars, one nickel and two $20 bills in your piggy bank. How much money have you saved up?

One $5 bill = 1$5 = $5 Nine half dollars = 9 50¢ = $4.50 Two quarters = 2 25¢ = 50¢ Two $20 bills = 2 $20 = $40 In total, that gives you

$5 + $4.50 + 50¢ + $40 = $50.00,

which means you have $50.00 in your piggy bank.

Think About This

Can you think of a different combination of bills and coins that would give you the same amount of money as in the two examples above?

Example 1: $1.27 = 50¢ + 50¢ + 27¢ = $1 + 27¢

You could have two half dollars and 27 pennies instead.

Example 2:

$50 = $50

You could just have a $50 bill instead.

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