Naming Four Coins
PROCEDURE. Show a nickel, a penny, a quarter, and a dime, asking each
time: "_What is that?_" If the child misunderstands and answers,
"Money," or "A piece of money," we say: "_Yes, but what do you call that
piece of money?_" Show the coins always in the order given above.
SCORING. The test is passed if _three of the four_ questions are
correctly answered. Any correct designation of a coin is satisfactory,
including provincialisms like "two bits" for the 25-cent piece, etc. If
the child changes his response for a coin, we count the second answer
and ignore the first. No supplementary questions are permissible.
REMARKS. Some of the critics of the Binet scale regard this test as of
little value, because, they say, the ability to identify pieces of money
depends entirely on instruction or other accidents of environment. The
figures show, however, that it is not greatly influenced by differences
of social environment, although children from poor homes do slightly
better with it than those from homes of wealth and culture. The fact
seems to be that practically all children by the age of 6 years have
had opportunity to learn the names of the smaller coins, and if they
have failed to learn them it betokens a lack of that spontaneity of
interest in things which we have mentioned so often as a fundamental
presupposition of intelligence. It is by no means a test of mere
This test was given a place in year VII of Binet's 1908 scale, the coins
used being the 1-sou, 2-sous, 10-sous, and 5-franc pieces. It was
omitted from the Binet 1911 revision and also from that of Goddard.
Kuhlmann retains it in year VII. Others, however, have required all four
coins to be correctly named, and when this standard is used the test is
difficult enough for year VII. Germany has six coins up to and including
the 1-mark piece, all of which could be named by 76 per cent of
Bobertag's 7-year-olds. With the coins and the standard of scoring used
in the Stanford revision the test belongs well in year VI.