Coining It

Coining It

Everyone has their own perception of reality. Put perception to the test with a simple question and a few coins on a table. You’ll soon see how.

Guide lines
Ready, Steady, Go!

Place a few coins on a flat surface and position one of them on its side, so it’s sitting perpendicular to the table.


A penny for your thoughts… how good are you perception skills?

They should be game.

Lend me your ears

Point out the coins on the table.


Off the top of your head, how many coins would it take to stack up next to the standing coin… five, maybe six? What’s your guess?

Get any others standing by to add their predictions.

Seal the Deal and Reveal

After all guesses are in, reveal the answer by pulling the stack from your pocket and placing them next to the standing coin.


The answer is twelve, that’s a lot pricier than you first expected, right?

(Final number may vary depending on type of coins used.)

Some extra lines you can try

  • Don’t be hard on yourself, it’s not like we were playing for all this money.
  • Our perceptions about money have to change, don’t you think?
  • We really are coining it today.
Alternative ending

At the beginning, set up that you’re playing for all the coins on the table. Correct answer wins the coins. You should still walk away with your coins.


I’m not saying that it’s okay to gamble at work, but let’s make this interesting.

Anticipated responses and retorts

Did you get this right the first time?

Not even close.

Does that work with all kinds of coins?

American Quarters work best.

Can you lend me some of that change for the vending machine?

Only if you give us the correct answer.
Good follow ups
When & where
When to use it
  • When you want to challenge perceptions.
  • When you want to get people involved.
  • When people need some out of the box stimulation.
Where to use it
  • office canteen
  • mentoring
  • customer meetings
  • socializing at a bar
Getting ready
Items required
  • About a dozen coins that are all the same
  • A flat surface
  • Test the coins you have to see how many make up a stack that is one coin in height.
Training required
  • If you can count coins you are all set.
Watch out (potential unexpected effects)
  • You may lose some coins.

type type

Do It Yourself (DIY)

material material

metal - coins

size size

a bunch of coins

durability durability

if you spend the money you will have to gather more coins

source source

money talks

time to impact time to impact

pretty much there and then

size of audience size of audience

this works well with any size group

possible health risk possible health risk

could cost you a pretty penny?

reusable how many times you can use it

once per person or group

training needed training needed

test to see the number of coins required

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