Guatemalan Quetzal: Compare/Contrast Coin Currency

The quetzal is the currency of Guatemala, named after the national bird of Guatemala, the resplendent quetzal. In ancient Mayan culture, the quetzal bird’s tail feathers were used as currency. It is divided into 100 centavos, or lenes in Guatemalan slang. The plural is quetzals.

Currently there are six coins in circulation, 1, 5, 10, 25 & 50 centavos and 1 quetzal. The coins currently in circulation are disc-shaped and include Guatemala’s national coat of arms on the obverse.

I love comparing money (usually coins, as I can’t spend too much money, lol) from other countries with United States coins – I currently have in my collection a 1c, 5c, 10c, 25c, 50c and silver dollar. I first have my oldest compare the coins from both country, then we line them up by value.

We then compared each value piece with an equivalent US coin. Is it bigger/smaller? Heavier/lighter? How does the colors differ? Shape? Thickness? Although my oldest daughter doesn’t know the value of money yet, this activity is great to compare and contrast!

My kiddo loves to line up the coins by size. Great activity for promoting concepts like bigger and smaller. How fun to play with Guatemalan money and learn about the country in the process! 🙂

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