Economics Reading for the Kids

If you’re looking for ways to expose your kids to economics at an early age, Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, director of the Rutgers University Project on Economics and Children, has some suggestions. They are mostly picture books, geared toward children ages five to ten. Her recommendations include Cloud Tea Monkeys, Those Shoes, Violet the Pilot, Beatrice’s Goat and Sanji and the Baker. “[T]hat’s part of the idea behind this project I’m involved with – to teach children while they’re young about economic concepts and to get them to be familiar at an early age with the economic world around them,” says van der Meulen Rodgers. “Also, not to be scared of economics – many of us, as adults, don’t like that word. But, if kids grow up very familiar with some of these economics ideas in a comfortable context, what better thing is there?” (HT: Greg Mankiw) [%comments]

Barbara Marbell

The best economic information for children I have ever seen was a magazine first called Zillions and renamed Penny Power (or something like that.) It was published in the late 80's and/or early 90's.


Anybody got a reading list for teenagers?

Cash McDollar

MAYBE kids should be acquainted with Aesop's Fable: the "Ant and the Grasshopper."

---No it ain't about a Karate School and there is NO Xbox game promo co-release.

Sorry but kids get excited about books like prior generations got excited about cod liver oil.

Julien Couvreur

I recommend Ken Schoolland's "The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible", which is very accessible.

Sam X Renick

It's a Habit, Sammy Rabbit! Sammy's Big Dream plus original toe tapping music - all that has been field tested and evaluated by the University of Maryland. Evaluation of materials showed improved knowledge for both students AND teachers. See latest Journal of Family Consumer Sciences.


How about a readable book on economics that covers the bedrock theories for people who'd like a little more economics background? I took intro Micro and Macro and Ag Econ in Uni. But it wasn't theory or behavioral or something useful beyond supply, demand, long/short runs and variable/fixed costs. Freak and SF of course but others for people who'd like to sound smarter than they do now when discussing economics but like good reading, not textbooks.

mildred smith

The Little Red Hen


I don't like these examples at all, they all seem very cliched, moral and not very helpful for children. It might be worth teaching children about inequality, but I find it important to also teach them how to do well economically. In real life there won't be a monkey picking cloud tea for them.

Also, if you teach about inequality, how about teaching how it comes about, rather than just saying "there are evil bankers and bosses who exploit poor people".