The Four Money Bears

As I have often noted, education is a key, if not THE key to achieving financial freedom; and the earlier someone begins the process of learning about various personal finance concepts, practices and philosophies, the better. Over the last couple of years I have identified two sources for teaching kids about money.

Money As You GrowThere is Money As You Grow.  This web site was born as an initiative from the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability (PACFC), which was created by Executive Order 13530, signed by President Barack Obama on January 29, 2010.

Its charter is to advise the President on promoting and enhancing financial literacy and capability among the American people. Moreover, one of the key objectives of the PACFC is to find ways to improve the financial capability of young Americans.

To that end, the site highlights “20 Things Kids Need to Know to Live Financially Smart Lives” and supports those ideas with activities spread across five age groups.

Another website that has been identified is The Secret Millionaires Club. As noted on the site,  it is an animated series that features Warren Buffett as a mentor to a group of entrepreneurial kids whose adventures lead them to encounter financial and business problems to solve. The program teaches the basic of good financial decision-making and some of the basic lessons of starting a business. The animated series has 26 online short webisodes and TV specials featured on the HUB cable network.

The Four Money Bears BookToday I offer a third source, The Four Money Bears book. Mac Gardner, a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), offers his take on teaching kids about money. Having received a few copies from the author, I can tell you this book is a great tool for parents and grandparents looking to teach their kids about money and building their knowledge of personal finance.

As noted on the website for The Four Money Bears, the bears teach kids the four basic functions of money. Readers are encouraged to join Spender Bear, Saver Bear, Investor Bear, and Giver Bear as they teach us ways to use money. When they work together they learn to build a budget and teach each other how to better manage their money today and for the future.

I will be giving away copies of the book to two readers. If you have children or grandchildren and would like to add this book to your education toolbox, simply leave a comment.

The Winners will be selected at 12:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday, September 13th.

Blogger-in-Chief here at RetirementSavvy and author of Sin City Greed, Cream City Hustle and RENDEZVOUS WITH RETIREMENT: A Guide to Getting Fiscally Fit.


  1. I’m a teacher, and I often hear people say, “Personal finance should be taught in school.” The question I have is “How do we make the teaching of management interesting to students?” It’s great to know that different people and even governments are making efforts to find the answer. I sure never listened to any financial wisdom that was offered to me when I was young! I hope these resources do the trick.

    • To the question of “How do we make the teaching of management interesting to students?” I would suggest that it be done the same way as other subjects when possible. Of course it will not be possible to make everything about personal finance (financial management) interesting, but hey, a lot of things that are taught in school aren’t exciting but are definitely necessary.

      In my mind, personal finance is so important that States should make it part of their standards, on level with common standards such as mathematics, physical education, reading, writing, science, social studies, and languages.

      Until such time, and even after I suppose, that teaching of personal finance becomes more common thoughout our education systems, resources like those identified above are great options for parents.

  2. The four money bears book sounds like a great way to introduce young children to the money concept!

    • Definitely a good resource to put in your toolbox if you have young children … or grandchildren.

  3. This looks like an interesting book and a great way to teach kids about money.

    • Definitely a good way to communicate important information to the young ones.

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