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How to Start a Child Collecting Coins

Updated on January 1, 2017

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Get Started on the Right Foot with Coin Collecting

Coin collecting can be a lifetime hobby, but where does a child begin to grow an interest in coin collecting? While some my naturally gravitate to it, it is more common that the hobby is passed on to children from one of the adults in their lives. Parents can interest their children and coin collecting by giving them opportunities early in life to develop that interest.

Even very young children can learn the names of coins and can learn to read dates. Even young children can learn to sort coins and begin the basics of grading coins. For example, which coin is the shiniest which coin is the dingiest? A lifetime of coin collecting can begin with a simple task of collecting. For example, a child can be given the task of finding every penny from 1970 the year 2016. Some very good books are tailored to children as young as six, but really can be used with even younger children if an adult is willing to help them in their collecting. . Such an easy task allows the child easy wins while learning the basics of coin collecting.
A guide such as a book that can help a child learn some of the differences in coins can be a great aid. While many coins collecting books are out there, a coin collecting book that is developed for children will have some easy tasks and some visuals to help the child identify coins and broaden their interest in the hobby.

The importance of easy wins

A child who is just beginning to collect coins needs easy wins. That means they need a task that is easy to accomplish will not frustrate them and can be accomplished with everyday interactions with points. This is not collecting that requires eBay or specialty shops. Collecting with easy wins is a concrete task, such as every coin from particular years for every kind of coin or the state quarter task. If a child can experience easy wins early on they are much more likely to continue with the task for a long time and grow in their excitement for the hobby. Select a task that can be completed with coins in circulation. There is strong psychology around getting an unexpected reward like the kind a child gets when he gets a coin he needs in his loose change.

State Quarters

One of the most popular easy wins or coin collecting tests that can easily be completed is the state quarter program. State quarter are still in circulation they're easy to find. The concrete task of finding one from each state is a task that will excite most children. The state quarter program was a huge success, but as they are not being produced any more, making them slightly more rare in circulation. Because they are more rare it affords a new coin collector the opportunity to experience some success while still understanding that not every coin collecting task will be easy.


The most important thing in an adult who is interested in getting children excited about coin collecting is patience. If the adult has patience and an interest in coin collecting the child will likely have interest as well. If the adult focuses on the concrete tasks and easy wins set out in front of them with a book. The child will likely be interested in that task as well.


One of the pitfalls that some adults fall into when trying to interest children in coin collecting is taking on too much of the task. Because the adult is interested, the adult might take over whatever task the child is supposed to be doing. It's important to remember that the project is the child's no matter how interested you might be. It's also important to remember that dealing with some level of frustration inspires growth in both child and adult .

Encouraging Girls in Coin Collecting

Coin collecting is often associated with little boys more than girls, but that stereotype is changing. If you are working on interesting a girl in collecting, there are some additional tips appropriate for either gender:

  • Pay attention to what interests your child: just because other collectors care about it doesn't mean your 7-year-old cares about it. Your child might be interested in designs or age or shininess. Go with it, and don't get hung up on value or grade.


I highly recommend this guide designed for kids: Coin Collecting for Kids. One alteration I made was to cut out and paste into the book pictures of each state quarter. It makes collecting them easier for very young kids.


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