Free Money Counting Worksheets To Make Purchases Plus IEP Goals

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Having lots of resources like money counting worksheets to practice counting coins and bills is critical when teaching life skills math. Our students need a lot of practice with these skills to master the skills to fluency. And they need to practice the skills in multiple ways so they generalize them to the real life setting.

So in this post, I thought it would be helpful to share some potential IEP goals and give you some free money counting worksheets that can help you implement them in your classroom. They are a sample from a set of worksheets in my store. In addition to requiring very low prep, worksheets are great because they give you a work sample that provides you easy data collection on students’ progress. So they are a great source of documentation of students’ mastery of IEP goals for progress reporting. And you can use them the work product sticker from #2 in this post to help with that too.

Money Counting Worksheets That Are Already Differentiated

One of the things I always look for in educational materials is that they include easy differentiation. I even noted it in this post on teaching money skills.

Also look for materials that have differentiation built in.  So, there are easier (2 identical coins) cards or folders (or worksheets) and cards/folders with more complex problems (e.g., mixed coins to add).  This will make them more useful in the long term for new classes and allow you to individualize within your current class.

Counting Coin Worksheets to Match a Price Tag

One of the first skills our students work on after they begin to understand how much each coin is worth is counting the individual coins and determining the collective value. They typically start with pennies because it’s the closest to 1-1 correspondence. Then they can move to counting nickels, dimes and then quarters, since it’s like counting by 5s and 10s.

adding totals of identical coins on money counting worksheet with cut and paste
adding totals of groups of identifical coins on counting money worksheets

So you might write an IEP goal that works like this:

Stew Dent will count groups of identical coins (i.e., all pennies, or all nickels or all dimes or all quarters), up to 10 coins per group, accurately and match those groups of coins to a price tag or written amount with 80% accuracy over 3 consecutive instructional sessions.

Counting Mixed Coins to Match a Price Tag

Once students are able to count like coins, that’s when we start mixing the coins up. I typically start small with 2 coins, and then three, as you see in the money counting worksheets picture. I often use real coins to practice the counting. Sometimes the students can match the coins to a task card or the pictures on a worksheet. The free worksheets at the bottom of the post includes a worksheet that has 3 coin combinations that would match the IEP goal below.


Stew Dent will calculate total money amounts of groups of 2 or 3 mixed coins including penny, nickel, dime and/or quarter and match those groups to price tags or another type of written amount with 80% accuracy over 3 consecutive instructional sessions.

Counting Single Bills Money Counting Worksheets

Often we wait until students understand counting and adding coins before we introduce bills. However, sometimes it might make sense to start with counting $1 bills. This can be helpful if you want to jumpstart interest in money. Buying things for pennies these days is pretty difficult. But using the next dollar up strategy can be a great way to allow students who can’t make change to make real-life purchases. And to start students just need to be able to recognize $1 bills, have 1-1 correspondence, and be able to count 1 dollar over the price.


For some of your students, then, it might make sense to start with the money counting worksheet focusing on counting 1 dollar bills. This is the second free worksheet available in the resource library. And there are 4 worksheets in the full set with $1 going up to prices of $10. In this case, the students are counting the $1 bills to match the price to the exact price on the price tag.

Stew Dent will count groups of $1 bills up to totals of $10 and match to corresponding prices with 90% accuracy over 3 consecutive instructional sessions.

Counting Mixed Bills to Match a Price Worksheets and IEP Goal

Next, students need add mixed bills together. For instance, to combine a $5 bill and a $10 bill to make $15. For this skill, students need to identify and discriminate between the bills and then add their amounts together to get the total. On the money counting worksheets, they would then need to match that amount to a price tag for an item from the store.


Stew Dent will identify and add mixed sets of bills and match the totals to prices for items with 80% accuracy over 3 consecutive instructional sessions.

Last Steps: Adding Combinations of Coins and Bills


Finally, students will combine bills and coins to add totals of money to equal a price or determine how much money they might have available. The present money counting worksheets I’m talking about here don’t include this skill. However, these task cards in my store do target this skill. And there are a number of other activities in my store that you can read about here, as well as other ways to target this and many other money skills in this post about making teaching money engaging.

Grab Your Free Worksheets Or Buy the Whole Set!

Differentiated money worksheets: Shopping for a match. 2 worksheets-one with coins and one with bills. Includes coins and bills counting.
Free sample of counting money worksheets

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