Money as You Grow Book Club

Many parents and caregivers are eager to build a good financial literacy foundation for their kids, but might not feel they have enough time, tools, and confidence. Fortunately, many of the building blocks for financial well-being – like patience, planning, and problem-solving – don't require a lot of financial know-how.  The Money as You Grow book club is a family financial education program that uses children’s books to help families learn key money concepts through reading, play, and quiet one-on-one talks.

Are you interested in setting up a Money as You Grow book club in your community? Let us know!

Otherwise check out these great books and guides to use at home:

Browse through the books and choose one you'd like to read with your child. The books should be readily available at your library or bookstore. Then, download the discussion guide to print out or read on your screen.

Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday

by Judith Viorst

Summary: Alexander started the week as a rich young man. There were so many things he could do with a dollar. The money began to disappear.

Key ideas: Prioritizing, saving

Age: 4 and up

A Bargain for Frances by Russell Hoban

Summary: Frances saves and saves for a china tea set. Her friend Thelma tricks her into buying an old plastic tea set. Frances finds a way to get what she really wants.

Key ideas: Setting goals, staying true to yourself

Age: 6 and up

The Berenstain Bears & Mama’s New Job
by Stan and Jan Berenstain

Summary: When Mama becomes a “business bear,” the way work gets done around the house changes. Other members of the Bear family learn how to help more.

Key ideas: Setting goals, staying true to yourself

Age: 4 and up

The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble with Money by Stan and Jan Berenstain

Summary: Brother and Sister Bear spend money as soon as they get it. The cubs learn there is more to know about money than just how to spend it.

Key ideas: Making decisions, spending

Age: 4 and up

A Chair for My Mother by Verna Williams

Summary: A family loses all their furniture in a fire. They set a goal to buy a chair for mother. The family, neighbors, and friends work together for success.

Key ideas: Setting goals, earning

Age: 6 and up

Count on Pablo by Barbara deRubertis

Summary: Pablo is happy to go to the market with Abuela (Grandmother). He counts the fruits and vegetables to sell at the market. Pablo also uses his problem solving skills to help Abuela sell all the food at her booth.

Key ideas: Solving problems, earning

Age: 5 to 7

Curious George Saves His Pennies by Margaret and H.A. Rey

Summary: Curious George wants to buy a toy train at a local toy store. The man with the yellow hat suggests that George save money for the train. When George reaches his goal, he loses all his money on the way to the toy store.

Key ideas: Making decisions, sharing and borrowing

Age: 4 to 7

Just Shopping with Mom by Mercer Mayer

Summary: Mom goes food shopping with three youngsters. One has trouble accepting “no” for an answer.

Key ideas: Prioritizing, spending

Age: 4 and up

Lemonade in Winter by Emily Jenkins

Summary: On a cold winter day, Pauline and John-John set up a lemonade stand on the street outside their home. They try many ways to sell their drinks and Pauline teaches John-John how to count quarters along the way.

Key ideas: Solving problems, spending

Age: 3 to 7

My Rows and Piles of Coins by Tololwa M. Mollel

Summary: A young boy in Tanzania, a country in Africa, works hard and saves all his money for months. He wants to buy a bicycle to help his mother carry items to sell at the market.

Key ideas: Setting goals, saving

Age: 4 to 7

Ox-Cart Man by Donald Hall

Summary: A farm family uses their time, energy, and talents to make or grow almost everything they need. They also make and grow extra things to take to market and sell.

Key ideas: Earning, setting goals

Age: 4 and up

The Purse by Kathy Caple

Summary: Katie loves the noise her savings make in her bandage box. She spends her savings on a new purse and throws away her box. Now she has no noise and no money.

Key ideas: Solving problems, setting goals

Age: 4 and up

The Rag Coat by Lauren Mills

Summary: After Minna’s father dies, her neighbors make her a coat so she can go to school in cold weather. Minna chose the scraps of fabric for her coat because of the special stories behind each scrap. She is surprised by the reaction of her new classmates to the coat.

Key ideas: Solving problems, sharing and borrowing

Age: 6 to 9

Sheep in a Shop by Nancy Shaw

Summary: Some sheep go shopping for a birthday gift. They find they do not have enough money to pay for it. They decide to solve their problem by trading.

Key ideas: Making decisions, solving problems

Age: 4 and up

Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts

Summary: Jeremy wants a pair of shoes like the ones everyone at school seems to be wearing. His grandma has enough money to buy Jeremy a new pair of boots, not the shoes he wants. When his old shoes fall apart, Jeremy needs to make choices about what is important to him.

Key ideas: Prioritizing, sharing and borrowing

Age: 5 to 8

Tia Isa Wants a Car by Meg Medina

Summary: Tia Isa (Aunt Isa) is saving money to buy a car. Her niece earns money to help her aunt buy the car.

Key ideas: Solving problems, saving

Age: 4 to 8

A program of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau


Kenneth McLaurin, Jr.
Financial Management Educator
(607) 272-2292

Last updated May 6, 2020