Kids are fascinated by money – especially in a world where pocket change is slowly disappearing in favor of adults using debit cards and credit cards. Whether you are teaching children to identify coins, count change, or about personal financial literacy, picture books can help! Here are some great children’s books about money.
You can click on any of the covers below to learn more about each book.
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Lemonade in Winter by Emily Jenkins
A lemonade stand in winter? Yes, that’s exactly what Pauline and John-John intend to have, selling lemonade and limeade–and also lemon-limeade. With a catchy refrain (Lemon lemon LIME, Lemon LIMEADE! Lemon lemon LIME, Lemon LEMONADE!), plus simple math concepts throughout, here is a read-aloud that’s great for storytime and classroom use.
Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst
Anthony has two dollars and three quarters and one dime and seven nickels and eighteen pennies. Nicholas has one dollar and two quarters and five dimes and five nickels and thirteen pennies. Alexander has…bus tokens. And even when he’s rich, pretty soon all he has is bus tokens. He was rich. Last Sunday. Grandma Betty and Grandpa Louie came and gave Anthony and Nicholas and Alexander each a dollar. Alexander was saving his. Maybe for a walkie-talkie. And then there was bubble gum, some bets with Anthony and Nicholas (that Alexander lost), a snake rental, a garage sale, and all kinds of other things to spend money on. And now all he has is bus tokens when he used to be rich last Sunday.
The Penny Pot by Stuart Murphy
Life-size coins and a cat named Chester will soon have readers confidently counting coins along with Jessie and her friends at the face-painting booth.
You Can’t Buy a Dinosaur with a Dime by Harriet Ziefert
Clink, clink, clink, clink…Clink, clink, clinkity… Money saved in a bank makes your brain think-thinkity! Children are fascinated by money – how it looks, feels, smells, and most of all, what it buys. And Pete is no exception. This story describes how Pete saves his allowance, spends too much of it, has second thoughts, and starts over. Young readers will not only applaud Pete’s decisions, but join him in his computations as he saves, spends, and strategizes over future purchases.
Pigs Will Be Pigs by Amy Axelrod
The pigs are very hungry, and there’s no food in the house. Mr. Pig suggests eating out—but oh, no! The Pigs are out of money!
Bunny Money by Rosemary Wells
It’s Grandma’s birthday, and Ruby knows exactly what Grandma would love – a beautiful ballerina box. Max also knows what she’d love – a scary pair of ooey-gooey vampire teeth. Ruby has saved up a walletful of bills, but as unexpected mishap after mishap occurs, money starts running through the bunnies’ fingers. Will they have enough left for the perfect present?
A Dollar for Penny by Dr. Julie Glass
On a beautiful summer day a young girl sets up a lemonade stand and sells enough cups of refreshment to add up to a dollar. Told in rhyme, this delightful story combines the teaching of addition with a traditional rite of childhood entrepreneurship!
Curious George Saves His Pennies by Margret & H.A. Rey’s
When George decides to save up for that special red train in the toy store, he doesn’t realize how long it will take – or how hard he’ll have to work for his money. But when the time finally arrives to take his very full piggy bank to the toy store – surprise! – George loses it. Can this day, and George’s hard-won earnings, be saved?
Rock, Brock, and the Savings Shock by Sheila Bair
Rock and Brock are twins, but are very different. One day, their grandpa offers them a plan – for ten straight weeks he will give them each one dollar. But there is a catch! For each dollar they save, he will match it. If they spend it, they get nothing.
Jenny Found a Penny by Trudy Harris
The reader can help Jenny count her pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters as she saves the money to buy herself a very special present.
The Big Buck Adventure by Shelley Gill
One little girl and one very big dollar set out on a great adventure at the store. However, what seems like a pleasant afternoon of shopping soon turns perplexing as the challenge of her buying options becomes overwhelming. She doesn’t know what to do. There are so many choices, but she only has one buck.
26 Letters and 99 Cents by Tana Hoban
This innovative book is two books in one! First, learn the alphabet, then turn the book over and count from 1 to 99 using combinations of coins.
Just Saving My Money by Mercer Mayer
Little Critter works hard for his money! When Little Critter wants a new skateboard, Dad tells him that he needs to save his own money to buy it! He tries his very best, but soon finds that saving enough for what he wants isn’t so easy.
How the Second Grade Got $8,205.50 to Visit the Statue of Liberty by Nathan Zimelman
Ms. Pinckney’s class wants to visit the Statue of Liberty, and they need to raise the money to do it. But every time the class makes some money, they have to spend a little money, too. Between a lemonade stand mishap and a car wash gone awry, can the class make enough to cover their expenses? Readers will love following along with Susan Olson, treasurer, as she chronicles the comical ups and downs of the class’s efforts to reach their goal.
If You Made a Million by David M. Schwartz
With Marvelosissimo the Mathematical Magician as your guide, explore the fascinating world of money. To earn a penny, a dollar, ten dollars, or ten thousand, how big a job will you have to do? What might your pay look like – five nickels, a five-inch stack of dimes, a dump truck full of dollar bills? If you spend it, what can you buy? If you save it, how much will it grow? And what would you do if you – yes, you – made a million?
A Dollar, a Penny, How Much and How Many by Brian P. Cleary
This book explainx the basics of bills and coins. The comical cats show young readers how to count and combine pennies, nickels, fives, tens, and more. Peppy rhymes, goofy illustrations, and kid-friendly examples take the mystery out of money.
Making Cents by Elizabeth Keeler Robinson
How many nickels are in a quarter? Whose face is on the fifty-dollar bill? You’ll find the answers to these questions and many more in this exuberant introduction to denominations, from the penny to the hundred-dollar bill.
The Coin Counting Book by Rozanne Lanczak Williams
The Coin Counting Book is the perfect introduction to counting, addition, and identifying American money. From one penny to one-dollar, readers will learn the various coins, their mathematical relationships, and how to add them all together once their piggybanks are full.
The Go-Around Dollar by Barbara Johnston Adams
Every dollar travels from person to person in a different way. Matt finds a dollar on his way home from school and uses it to buy shoelaces from Eric. Eric spends the dollar on bubble gum at the corner store. Jennifer, who happens to be the next customer, receives the dollar as part of her change. This book weaves together a fictional narrative about the travels of a single dollar with facts and anecdotes that are sure to delight young readers.
Money Madness by David Adler
What’s all this madness about money? Long ago, people traded rocks or sheep for the items they wanted, but rocks were heavy and sheep ran away. This beginning guide to economics will have readers thinking about the purpose, and not just the value, of money.
Curious about Money by Mary E. Reid
Money talks . . . about history! Shells. Coins. Paper bills. Credit cards. Bitcoins. People have used all kinds of objects to buy, sell, or trade. Aren’t you curious: what is money?
National Geographic: Everything Money by Kathy Furgang
All you need to know about money can be found in the pages of this colorful, energetic, and accessible book. Kids will also learn about money around the world from a National Geographic expert, featured in “Explorer’s Corners” throughout the book. Packed with fun facts and amazing photographs, this book gives kids an in-depth look at money.
What Can You Do with Money? by Jennifer S. Larson
Do you get an allowance? Or have you ever been paid for doing chores, such as walking a neighbor’s dog or raking leaves? If so, you’ve earned money! Everyone has to decide what they will do with the money they earn. Will they spend it on things they want and need? Or will they save it? How can you decide what to do with your money? Read this book to find out.
DK Eyewitness Books: Money by Joe Cribb
Become an eyewitness to the history of cash and coin and get an up-close look at currency. From the earliest forms of money to the intricate banking systems we have today, currency has been around for millennia, whether made from stones and shells to the coins and paper we see today. This guide details various types of currency from both the past and present, from the sea salt money of Ethiopia to the modern Euro. Discover where the term piggy bank came from, why Ancient Greeks put coins in the mouths of dead people, and how coins and banknotes are made today.
Neale S. Godfrey’s Ultimate Kids Money Book
A renowned financial expert and chairwoman of the Children’s Financial Network provides an overview of economics and money, including earning, spending, saving, checks and credit cards, banks, and the history of currency.
You can find some games and activities for money here. Do you have any books you love for teaching students about money? I’d love to check them out!
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