Starting your child or grandchild in coin collecting can guide them to a life-long satisfying hobby. While you might often read about coins selling for hundreds of thousands of dollars, and even millions of dollars, starting a very young person out in coin collecting can be very modest. For the purposes of this story, we will consider that the young ones in question are less than 10 years old.

You may be asking yourself, is coin collecting for kids? The reply is certainly! Coin collecting can demonstrate constructive life skills such as research, organization and history. And once a youngster begins to appreciate that some coins, even those found in circulation have a value beyond face value, they will want to learn more about them.

Starting a kid out is more than just pointing them in the right direction. If you want this to be rewarding, you as the grownup will have to show them the excitement that one can get from collecting coins. And if you are not already a collector, you just may be taught something in the process and become enamored yourself.

Many people think that coin collecting is for nerds and such. Yet millions of people collect coins. You do not often hear about it for good reason though. The last thing you want to do is let the world know you collect coins as that can intrigue the nefarious element. For this story, we are concentrating on the enjoyment part of collecting. The ideas in this write-up will not make you rich. And while the collection we will talk about in this article may not be worth a lot of cash, it is best to put into effect good security measures right from the beginning. Here are some good guidelines:

1. Do not keep coins in plain sight. Keep in drawers or stored away when not in use.
2. Talk to your child about not conversing about coin collecting at school
3. If the child loses interest, put them in a safe deposit box in case the child regains interest

Coins are easy to pilfer and are usually one of the first things crooks will take if they see them.

So, how do you get started? Since we are talking about young children, we do not want to pay out a lot of cash. So, let’s start where most collectors started. Lincoln Cents. Yep, that often forgotten denomination that you see in penny jars, on the ground, in wishing wells, etc. Unbeknown to some, some Lincoln cents can be worth hundreds of dollars. But we are not going to start there. We are going to start with two simple Whitman Folders. The first folder will be the folder with the dates 1941 through 1974. The 2nd folder will be from 1975 thought 2009. Please note, the dates may vary in the 2nd folder depending on when the folder was constructed. With these two folders, your promising coin collector will be able to take almost any coin from circulation and fill a hole. You can find these at most Barnes and Noble , or any coin store. If you live in a metro area, you likely have a coin store nearby; just consult your yellow pages.

Now before getting started, you will need to sit with your very young person and tell them you and the youngster are going to work together on a hobby. The idea for the child is that you and the child are working together on a common goal. Filling a coin folder is just like completing a puzzle. You just have to find the right pieces.

Since we are concentrating on Lincoln Cents, you will want to tell the beginning collector some history on the Lincoln Cent. For example, the first Lincoln Cent was assembled over 100 years ago in 1909. You will also need to explain about the three different mints used to produce cents and where the Mint mark is. Be sure to talk about the history of Lincoln, etc. You can easily tie history into Lincoln Cent collecting.

Now that you have your folders, you know doubt have tens, if not hundreds of pennies around the house, or maybe the child’s piggy bank. Gather them up and see how many holes you can fill. If you have more than one very young person, each child should have their own folders to see who can fill them up first. Many times the holes in the folders are just not quite large enough. You may have to help your kid with putting in some of the coins. Be sure to show them how to correctly touch a coin. While these are probably only worth face value, better to begin now. Your child may also begin to question why some coins are a nice dazzling red while others are brown, which will be your chance to talk about condition of the coins.

Once you have consumed your home supply of pennies, you can take it a step beyond. If you are genuinely up for a challenge, go to the bank and get several rolls of pennies. Every now and then retail stores like grocery stores will also sell you a few rolls. But if you are up for a massive challenge, go to the bank and buy a box of pennies for $25.00. What a perfect family undertaking for a rainy or cold snowy day. What does not go into the folders you can re-roll and spend.

One thing your coin collector(s) will observe is that they will see many dates and Mint Marks over and over. You can explain that in any given year, the mintages of cents varied for a variety of reasons. They will also come to realize that there are many dates that are not all that common. Certainly many of the Wheat Cents will not be found in circulation. But appreciate the potential joy a child may have if they find a pre 1940 coin. Speaking from experience, if you buy a box of pennies, you will likely come across a few wheat cents and every now and then they are pre 1940. As your collector comes across repeated dates, you can talk to the blossoming collector about the condition of the coins. If you find a coin that is nicer than the one in the folder, you can replace it.

After numerous afternoons/evenings of filling holes in your folder, the child may become interested in the wheat cents. Since you will not likely find them in circulation, a trip to the coin store may be in order. If you get to this point, you may very well have a coin collector in the making.

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