Last week’s post about giving a money book to your young kids prompted some requests for recommended books for older kids, which is what this article is all about. The suggested age ranges are in parentheses.
A key difference between money books for young kids and money books for older kids is that the ones for younger kids are stories that convey a money-related message whereas those for older kids tend to teach the lessons more directly.
However, the first three recommendations straddle the two worlds.
The Ultimate Gift (14+). Jason’s great uncle passes away and leaves part of his fortune to him. But he also puts some conditions on the money, leaving Jason a series of life-changing instructions that he recorded before he died. Faith-based lessons about money and much more.
The Richest Man in Babylon (16+). First issued in the 1920s as a series of pamphlets, this is one of the true classics of personal finance. As the description on Amazon puts it, “Countless readers have been helped by the famous ‘Babylonian parables,’ hailed as the greatest of all inspirational works on the subject of thrift, financial planning, and personal wealth.”
The Wealthy Barber (16+). A fictional barber, Roy, teaches customers important lessons of wise money management as he cuts their hair, teaching that even on a modest salary people can achieve financial success.
Personal finance books
The Grad’s Guide to Money (16-19). I had to include this one since I wrote it! (It’s part of the Navigator’s series of “The Grad’s Guide to…” books.) Teaches young people the importance of cultivating the right financial habits now. Even though they may not have much money at this stage of life, the habits they build now will be magnified once they do have some money—for better or for worse. Practical applications of clear biblical principles.
The Money Challenge for Teens (13-19). Trusted Christian author Author Art Rainer introduces readers to some fictional young friends who are navigating financial waters and learning how God would want them to face college choices and car loans and thoughts about retirement (yes, even as a teenager!).
O.M.G.: Official Money Guide for Teenagers (10-18). This short (48 pages) book filled with illustrations is a quick read that covers the essentials—from budgeting to saving, and from insurance to philanthropy—in an engaging format.
O.M.G.: Official Money Guide for College Students (17-22). Also short (52 pages) and filled with illustrations, this one targets the college-age crowd with additional topics like student loans.
Why Didn’t They Teach Me This in School? 99 Personal Money Management Principles to Live By (15-21). “…initially developed by the author to pass on to his five children as they entered adulthood,” the 99 principles are grouped into eight overarching lessons.
The Teen Money Manual (15-18). Packed with illustrations, charts, graphs, and checklists, this book covers all the essentials in a detailed, yet easy-to-read way.
Secret Millionaires Club (8-12). This one probably should have been on last week’s list since it’s for younger kids. It’s Warren Buffet as a cartoon character teaching kids “26 secrets to success in the business of life” — lessons about personal finance and personal character.
The Motley Fool Investment Guide for Teens (12-16). The founders of a very successful series of investment newsletter direct their breezy, humorous style of teaching toward teens. The examples may be a bit dated, but the principles are timeless.
Blue Chip Kids (12-16). An introduction to the world of investing by an investor/lawyer who originally wrote this for his 13-year-old son because of his frustration over the lack of investing books for kids.
What Color is Your Parachute for Teens? (15-17). College is a very expensive place to find yourself. Far better for our kids to know what they want to do with their lives before they move into the dorm.
Bonus idea: Crown Financial Ministry’s Career Direct assessment.
How to Start Your Very First Business (8-12). Companion book to The Millionaire Kids Club, the cartoon version of Warren Buffett is back, teaching kids lessons on creating and managing their own business.
The Richest Kids in America: How They Earn It, How They Spend It, and How You Can Too (14-18). Written by one of the co-creators of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, this book provides guidance and lots of inspiration by telling the stories of real kids who’ve started their own businesses.
What other books would you add to this list?
Also, don’t forget that summer is a great time to be intentional about teaching your kids a comprehensive, biblical approach to money. To help with that, pick up a copy of my new book, Trusted: Preparing Your Kids for a Lifetime of God-Honoring Money Management.
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