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

mechanical memory.

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.