It seems as if more and more families are working hard to pay off debt and to establish healthier financial habits. Many of us didn’t receive much financial instruction, if any, during our growing up years, and often have to face a few struggles before we recognize our need to learn more about it. As parents and caregivers we desire to protect our children from having to learn things “the hard way”, and this includes lessons having to do with finances, but where do we start when it comes to teaching our children how to make good financial decisions?
Let’s Chat About Economics! by Michelle Balconi and Dr. Arthur Laffer is a four chapter picture book aimed at intermediate school aged children. Teamed with Dr. Laffer’s economics wisdom, Balconi does an excellent job using the vehicle of storytelling to communicate economic principles and how they effect everyday decisions. The four chapters cover such subjects as supply and demand, costs and trade-offs, savings, and making thoughtful purchases. There is also an excellent glossary which makes Let’s Chat About Economics! a great starting point for learning specific terms, as well as their applications.
Often a story is lost when trying to teach a more academic lesson, or the lesson becomes lost in the distraction of a fun story. Balconi has done a good job of balancing both the learning and the stories in Let’s Chat About Economics! It is best to use it as a read aloud so that you can discuss the lesson with your child as you read, but the stories are interesting enough that my daughter walked off and finished the book without me when I had to set it aside to make dinner.
There are many lessons that we all must learn in order to experience the successes in life, but each of us have our own ideas of what those successes look like. I love that Balconi calls attention to this fact with her highlighted quote, “You are a unique and scarce resource with tremendous value – make choices that serve you!” For some people, that may mean buying the latest technology, and for others, that may mean a fun day of garage sale shopping.
Let’s Chat About Economics! introduces children to the ideas and terms of economics which effect our everyday lives, making children mindful of such things. It is very helpful in starting a financial conversation with the children in your life and may just show them how to think through whether or not a new toy or a fun trip is the best decision to make in the moment.
Alyssa Katanic is a wife and homeschooling mother of 7 children under 11 years old. She loves reading and collecting great books to share with others and knows that one can never have too many!
Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Gichigami Press. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.