Sometimes it amazes me to think about just how much there is for me to teach my children. From basic, everyday skills like tying shoes to more complex concepts like social responsibility, the school system just scratches the surface. And one of the things that I’m most determined to teach my boys is financial literacy. With approximately three-quarters of Canadians living in debt, I know just how important money management skills are for my boys to learn. But how do I start teaching them, at just nine and six, the basics of finances?
A new book series has the answer, and for any Canadian parent that wants to teach their child financial literacy, it’s a great kid-friendly way to introduce the topic. M is for Money has one simple goal…to teach the basics of money management in a fun, kid-friendly way. The book series’ two main characters, Tessa and Benji, share their own experience making and saving money. As they get their first payment for helping with chores, learn about saving for special things and open their first bank accounts, kids can follow along with the journey to learn about money!
The M is for Money line includes nine fun picture books, stickers, play money, reward notes and more. The core of the program is the books, which help teach children about the difference between dollars and cents, the value of various coins and bills and the basics of a bank account. I sat down to read the books with Zackary and Benjamin to see what my boys thought of the adventures of Tessa and Benji.
What I immediately liked about this series was that it didn’t just teach kids about the importance of saving and earning money, it also taught the value of various coins and bills. Since kids have a tendency to think that bigger is better, knowing that a coin’s value isn’t dependent on its size is an important first lesson.
The second book in the series discussed earning money, which Tessa and Benji did with a lemonade stand. Since my two boys have actually set up a lemonade stand in the past, they loved this book especially. The two main characters work together to provide a service needed by their neighbours on a hot day, and are rewarded with payment for their work. I liked that Benji realized the children may want to save the money to put towards lemons and ice to create another stand in the future. And of course, my boys liked seeing how the kids’ hard work payed off and added more money to their piggy banks!
The first six books of M is for Money series are available now in both eBook, hardcover and softcover editions at select book stores across Canada and online, with the final three books being released soon. I liked some of the additional available merchandise offered as well. The Reward Notes are my personal favourite; they give me such a fun and easy way to let my boys know I’ve appreciated their actions. And by adding a payment for a job well done, I can continue to help my boys learn about managing their money!
If you’d like to help your children learn about the basics of money, M is for Money is here to help! One lucky Mommy Kat and Kids reader is going to win a prize pack similar to the one I received containing the first three M is for Money books and an assortment of M is for Money merchandise, a $50 total value! To enter to win, just leave a blog comment about a money tip that you’d like your kids to learn.
The M is for Money series has been designed for children between five and nine years of age, and with my two boys right in that age bracket, I can say that author Teresa Cascioli has done a great job of reaching her target audience effectively. The book series has motivated my boys to save more of their money, and motivated me to open a bank account for Benjamin, something I’ve been planning for some time. If you’ve been wondering how you can start teaching your child about money, this collection is a great way to get started. Check out the books and other resources today and help your child build lifelong financial literacy skills!