When it comes to teaching kids about money, I’m of the opinion that the sooner, the better. Now that’s not to say we shouldn’t proceed with caution – definitely don’t want them adopting harmful habits or money stories! But the sooner you can help your kids understand how money works, the better. In fact, it’s one of the best ways to ensure they don’t end up in debt as adults.
These books are great to add to your repertoire of mixing fun with learning. As I’ve talked about before, we love to use Pokemon cards to teach kids math and are all about reading apps to help kids learn! So while these books are some of the best to teach kids about money, they’re also genuinely enjoyable reads!
The Best Books to Teach Kids About Money
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My first pick for the teaching kids about earning a dollar would be Money for the Circus by Naturee Hutchinson. In this book, the three children learn they are going to the circus, but first – they have to earn money to do so!
I think if I were to count out our books, books on dinosaurs would outnumber the rest 5:1. My son has always been dinosaur-obsessed! That’s why I love You Can’t Buy a Dinosaur With a Dime by Harriet Ziefert. It’s written in rhyme and provides a solid combination of fact plus fiction for fun learning all around.
Mana’s little Reminders by A.D. Williams is a must-read for all ages when it comes to financial literacy! The book highlights the life of an inner-city kid with big dreams. It helps children understand that it’s never too early to be financially prepared for that which we want in life. As an entrepreneur myself, I love any books that keep the idea simple but strong – and this book definitely does that!
Teaching Kids That Things Cost Money
Lily Learns about Wants and Needs by Lisa Bullard is a great book to help children learn the difference between wanting something vs needing something. It’s made up of simple stories to help present basic financial concepts in easy to learn ways. Perfect for kids!
Do you remember Max and Ruby books from your childhood? I loved them! And this is one that always sticks in my mind – Bunny Money. Maybe it’s because the idea of Grandma Bunny wanting ooey-gooey vampire teeth always tickled me pink. It’s such an adorable story.
Money is Earned
You can’t beat Berenstain Bears when it comes to books for kids in general. So of course I had to include a couple in this list of books for kids! Trouble with Money is a great book where Brother and Sister dig into their entrepreneurial spirit to make some money. I even remember having this book as child – maybe that’s what has led me to creating a blog on frugal living.
Another Berenstain Bears favorite is Dollars and Sense. Papa tries so hard to help Brother and Sister learn to budget their money!
If You Made a Million by David Schwartz is another great book to teach kids about what it means to earn money. Schwartz has actually written over 50 children’s books on money and math! This book even starts to dive into what it means to invest money, but keeps it simple for kids.
Teach Kids About Saving Money
When the name of the game is avoiding debt, teaching kids about saving money is essential! Start with Money Ninja by Mary Nhin. It’s a fun adventure of saving, investing, and donating. It’s easy for young readers, but witty enough for older kids (and even adults!)
Ahh good ol’ Curious George – couldn’t leave him out of this! Curious George Saves His Pennies is a story of George saving up for a special red toy train only to lose his piggy bank! I also love that the back of the book includes a paper piggy bank that folds into a small box to start that savings journey.
Speaking of “old school” books – I always love me some Little Critter books! Just Saving My Money is a great one for those between the ages of 4-7. It’s easy to read and fun. You can’t go wrong with Little Critter books, that’s for sure.
Another book to help kids learn about the importance of saving is Rock, Brock, and the Savings Shock. I love it because it provides a great comparison snapshot as to what happens if you save money versus spend it. Rock and Brock are twins whose grandpa gives them each $1 and says that every Saturday, he’ll give them $1 plus match whatever they’ve managed to save. You won’t believe how much Brock has in just ten weeks!! Honestly it’s a pretty brilliant way to save as adults, too – similar to my penny savings trick to saving money!
The Power of Giving
When I started teaching my kids about money, the moonjar was a big part of that! For those unfamiliar, a MoonJar is a “piggy” bank that allows you to divide up your money between spend, save, and give.
Volunteering as a family is a core value for me, but so is donating money when possible. I love the idea of teaching kids the importance of giving in general!
So with that said, here’s a few of my favorite books to help children learn the importance of charity – starting with What is Given from the Heart by Patricia C. McKissack and illustrator April Harrison. This book is a beautiful story of compassion and a poignant reminder that what is given from the heart, reaches the heart.
While not directly about money, Peg + Cat: The Eid al-Adha Adventure is another great book to teach kids about giving. Peg and Cat’s friends Yasmina and Amir share the importance of Eid al-Adha and dividing their meal into equal parts. With this book, your child can learn all about taking from where there’s plenty while giving to where there’s less.
Lastly there’s Nina & Nate go on a Treasure Grant by Carina Paladino. Another interactive book, this is a fantastic way to teach kids about empathy and community. It’s also another one that has a great rhyming rhythm, which is always great for kids! It asks questions that all of us should consider, such as “How can we help? What can we do?” It’s really perfect for all ages.
More Kids Books About Money
Madison’s 1st Dollar by Ebony Beckford is a super fun book about money! In it, Madison just got her first dollar and is working through what she wants to do with it. Beckford’s writing style encouages interaction with readers, which I absolutely love.
The illustrations in Money Monsters: The Missing Money by Okeoma Moronu-Schriener and illustrator Sandhya Prabhat made this book a must-mention. It’s a super cute story about a boy’s first encounter with the banking system. I especially love that this book touches on mobile banking apps. Gotta love living in the future!
You can’t go wrong with sloths, am I right? You know I am! Saving like a Sloth by Markus Heinrich is absolutely adorable. A great children’s book about finance, it’s a great way to help kids learn about all three concepts of saving, donating, and spending.
When it comes to teaching your kids about money, there’s little better than reading books to them on the topic. I’m a huge proponent of reading to kids every night and I hope you feel the same. There’s so many benefits to reading to our kids, but teaching them (especially about money) definitely ranks up there as one of the best reasons.
I’d love to know in the comments what’s YOUR favorite children’s book about money? I’m always looking for more to add to my own library.