Wed, Apr 03 2013. 06 35 PM IST

Making money concepts fun for children

Pratham Books has launched a four-book series that deal with basic concepts of money
Saurabh Kumar

Priyanka Parashar/Mint
Inculcating good money habits in children is often a concern with parents. And, rightly so. “The earlier kids know about money basics, the better it is,” says B. Srinivasan, a Bangalore-based financial planner.
The good news is that you now have an aid to help you teach your children money basics. Pratham Books, a not-for-profit organization, launched a new four-book Rupaiya Paisa Series about a month ago that deal with various topics on financial literacy. The books have been written by Mala Kumar and illustrated by Deepa Balsavar.
“I think it is a very good idea. I know youngsters who think money comes out of an ATM (automated teller machine). Children need to be introduced to and sensitized about banking transactions, interest rates and other such things,” says Srinivasan.
So if your children have started reading, irrespective of the age group, they can use these books effectively. “These are level 4 books and are meant for children who have reading proficiency and therefore are ready to understand higher level concepts,” says Manisha Chaudhry, head-content development, Pratham Books.
The books talk about the history of money, savings, investment, remittance, insurance, difference between needs and wants, among other topics related to financial literacy. To make the otherwise boring topic interesting, the concepts have been explained through small anecdotes accompanied with colourful illustrations to stimulate children. “We believe that if a child is given an interesting book written in their mother tongue, the child will develop a positive relationship with the book in general,” says Chaudhry. The book is available in six languages.
The first book in the series, The World of Money, talks about the history of money and uses various anecdotes on how money evolved. The book also talks about how to earn, save and grow money. Day-to-day examples have been used to help children connect easily. “We have used colourful pictures and rooted them to their lives by using examples of family, neighbours or vendors that they may encounter every day,” says Chaudhry.
The other books in the series—How Money Travels, The Money Managers and Be Wise with Money—delve deep into other concepts such as bank savings account, methods to save, meaning and importance of insurance, money management. At the end, the last book summarizes the series with a small demonstration on business transaction.
So how did this idea to teach money concepts to children through these books came about? “Our objective is not just to teach children but introduce them to the joy of reading. When a child has reached a level where he can read proficiently, it is good to introduce them to non-fiction concepts close to their lives. And money is one of them. The idea is to demystify money,” says Chaudhry.
Book available in languages: English, Hindi, Marathi, Kanada, Urdu and Telugu.
Price: `160 for the entire set.
Buy at: http://prathambooks.org