Our family made up a game we call "Win Mommy's Money."

The kids do just what the title says. I start with naming coins. If they can tell me if it's a penny, nickel, dime or quarter they can keep it. It takes 2 or 3 rounds and then we have to make the game harder, and then they have to name the coin AND tell me how much it's worth. When they can name the coin AND know the value, then we start adding 2 coins together...then 3..4 and 5... When I'm in the poor house (all my spare change is gone LOL), I make it harder.

Next, I tell them the price of something. They have to find the correct amount.

Soon they have to subtract the change in my hand from a dollar. (If I pay 37 cents for a lollipop, how much change will I get back?) What coins could I use? What if we didn't have any quarters?

My kids are way too old for this game, but still ask to play when they need some spare change. It works like a charm, much better than a worksheet, and I think it carries over into real life application more effectively as well.

Playing store with a nice cash register that helps count real money is effective. We actually use this cash register for garage sales. Which reminds me...let your children sell their own used toys in a garage sale. Nothing motivates quite like actually earning real money.

Another homemade game: Write numbers on craft sticks. Put the craft sticks at the end of the driveway. Sit on the porch and call out "4+5" or "6x7"...they run and find the stick with the correct answer. I was just brainstorming ways to evolve this game into practice for square roots, matching fractions to decimals and percents. Kids love to run, especially if it's a competition with a sibling. (You can give a 1st grader addition sticks and a 5th grader fractions...)