In today’s nontrivial financial climate, managing your finances has become one of the must-have skills for individuals who want to do well for themselves. Smart investment, smart saving, and smart financial planning can work wonders on our lives, and miracles on our bank accounts. Sadly, those are not skills any school will teach us or our children. There are, however, a few brilliant authors that manage to address the issue in a playful, engaging way and teach the young readers those important lessons about money.
This is a list of books that we’ve found the most endearing and financially educating. Enjoy!
1. Bunny Money by Rosemary Wells teaches basic money math on the example of a pair of bunny siblings, Ruby and Max. They have saved a $100 to buy a birthday present for their grandma, only to see unexpected events cause some of that money disappear. The bunnies struggle to manage their money in order to be able to afford the present for their grandma.
2. Lemonade in Winter by Emily Jenkins and G. Brian Karas teaches the basics of entrepreneurship and some basic math, as well as deliver the very important lesson that sometimes even a great idea does not turn out according to expectation. The lessons are enveloped in a warm blanket of two siblings that decide to open a lemonade stand in the thick of winter.
3. The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies also explores the popular theme of lemonade stands, although from another perspective. The two siblings in this story open competing lemonade stands. In it we learn about creative competition in an amusing, entertaining way.
4. Becoming Naomi Leon by Pam Munoz Ryan is for children above 8 and deals with the story of a young girl who has to deal with multiple hardships. One of them is a very tight budget that she has to be able to manage and live by.
5. Joseph Had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback is about a prudent man who has a very nice overcoat that begins to wear out from overuse. His solution is to reuse the material to make a jacket, then a small vest, then some other even smaller garments, until it is turned into a cloth button. The clever illustrations in the book bring the story to life and teach the young readers that reusing things is a fun and clever way to save.
6. Annie’s Adventures by Lauren Baratz-Logsted is the first book in the “The Sisters 8” series about orphaned octuplet sisters whose parents disappeared. In this first book Annie, one of the siblings, has to figure out their disappeared parents’ finances and how to manage them. She learns about writing checks, interpreting bills and managing the family’s expenses. The story is a gentle introduction into adult reality and finances, enveloped in a humorous, enjoyable adventure. In addition to the basic principles of earning and spending, the book teaches about entrepreneurship, money management and frugality, valuable lessons one and all.
7. How to Steal a Dog by Barbara O’Connor has a title that might cause a few raised eyebrows, but is really a touching story about a homeless child. The book teaches us valuable lessons on ethics, friendship and hardship.
8. Hothead by Cal Ripken Jr. does not deal with finances directly, focusing instead on the emotional distress of having financial trouble in your life. The protagonist’s father gets laid off, and the boy has to learn a great deal about anger management, both at home and out there.
There are many more amazing, magical works of literary art that touch on this important subject, and we hope to relate them to you in future publications. In the mean time, enjoy your reading!
Image credits: Amazon.ca