Demetrius’ Money Is Maya’s Money at The Basement Target Store
The boy’s doing well in math at school, but conceptually ‘isn’t getting’ counting money and using it in context.
So we’ve decided to start working on that at home – not something that seems to agree with him. The fit was the tense-up-the-body-straight-legged-arms-extended-red-face ‘NO, NO, NO! I WON’T COUNT MONEY!’ type.
So off to the basement Maya and Daddy went last night with Demetrius throwing a fit in the living room (much to his mother’s delight, I’m sure) to play with our cash register and money.
Now Maya has a very interesting observation about money – you slide your card through the ‘slider’. See, she’s a generation that watches her parents pay for everything electronically with a credit card. The thrill of having exact change to give to a cashier may be forever lost on this child. However, she does know what dollar bills are and change (pennies, dimes, bright and shiney ‘ones’), but in her hierarchy this is below ‘Daddy’s cards in his book (wallet)’.
So we went over the change, dollars bills, etc…and we could still here the boy upstairs throwing a fit, attempting to negotiate this ‘money torture’ with his mother. So Maya started to get the ones-and-fives concept (we get lost once we hit the $10s) and it was time to shop. I gave her some change, a bunch of ones and fives – and told her to go pick out some toys to buy….here at Target, in the basement.
Maya: “We are pretending to shop at Target?”
Daddy: “Yes, everything in the basement is for sale, just put it in your bag and then bring it over here, I’ll take your money and we’ll pretend we are shopping at Target.”
Maya: “I love shopping!”
Maya runs upstairs: “Demetrius, we are pretending to shop at Target with our money!”
Maya runs downstairs and begins to shop…and mind you, she is serious about this..she is on her A game (what red-blooded American girl isn’t when it comes to shopping?!?).
(Behind me) “Sniffle, sniffle…Daddy?”
Daddy: “Hi Demetrius.”
Demetrius: “Can I go shopping with money at Target too?”
So the boy got some cash and change, and went shopping. Now Maya, she goes shopping with Mommy a lot…so she bought a lot of plastic fruit…you know, the kind that is on sale at Kroger or Super H Mart, but at Target. These are ‘good foods’ that would help her baby doll ‘grow healthy teeth.’ We added all the items up and began to subtract money from the total. My most interesting Maya’s observation in this ‘hidden’ math exercise? “Daddy, I want all of this stuff, but don’t take all my money, I want to buy some toys too – so use some of yours and Demetrius’ okay?”
I can only say – ‘ugh’. THIS IS A SIGN OF THINGS TO COME IN HER TEENAGE YEARS, I’M SURE.
Demetrius wanders over with…well, parts of toys. He decided he wanted a Ninja Turtle pair of nun chucks that have obviously gone missing from the Ninja Turtle toy…and part of a glove that goes to a Teen Titans toy….these types of things. And he was happy – pretty juiced up in fact. These toys had been missing, and by ‘shopping’ he had rediscovered them and was going to ‘go upstairs and put them back up in his collection.’
I was happy. We had hit a vein that had him engaged in doing things with money. So we added all this ‘stuff’ up, and I asked him for his money. He smiled and said, “I gave my money to Maya.”
Daddy: “Why did you do that?” (Maya comes running over with it, she knows what she did)
Maya: “I used my money, so I’m keeping Demetrius’ money (ahhhh…of course!).”
We discuss giving Demetrius back his money, being greedy, and not sharing (can’t throw the whole book at her yet). We pay for his ‘stuff’. He runs upstairs to his room to put his collection back together and he wants to show Mommy.
We had a hit, money was fun…on this particular Monday night.
As we closed Target to go upstairs for dinner, Maya looks at me and says:
“Did Demetrius have any money left? Because I need it to buy more toys.”
This is only going to get more interesting over the years, isn’t it?