Reading list for young people and their families

References to books and online materials are sorted by age groups from pre-schoolers to grandparents.  URL links are printed in blue letters to provide quick access to a website. Click the computer’s mouse on those letters.

Pre-Schoolers

books

  • Dollars, by Mary Hill. Welcome Books (™): Money Matters. Danbury, 2005. Teaches children to recognize and count money. 
  • Spending and Saving, by Mary Hill. Welcome Books (™): Money Matters. Danbury, 2005. Examples of good ways to use money. 

internet reading

internet videos

Pre-Teens

books

  • The Kids’ Money Book. Earning, Saving, Spending, Investing, Donating. by Jamie Kyle McGillian, Sterling Children’s Books, New York, 2016. Author encourages children to earn and use money wisely.
  • Money $ense for Kids. by Hollis Page Harmon, Barrons, Hauppauge, 2005. An age-appropriate explanation of investing.
  • Investing Money. by Helen Thompson, Mason Crest, Broomall, 2011. A thorough and useful explanation of investing.  
  • Personal Management. Boy Scouts of America Merit Badge Series.  Brent A. Neiser, et al. 1996, 2012. A brief guide to personal finance.  

internet reading

internet videos

Teens

books

  • The Teenage Investor. How to Start Early, Invest Often, and Build Wealth. Tim Olson, McGraw-Hill, New York, 2003. This teenage author gives a complete explanation of the methods, risks, and rewards of investing in financial markets.  
  • A Gift to My Children. A Father’s Lesson for Life and Investing.  Jim Rogers. Random House, 2009. A successful investor’s good advice to teens.  
  • Dollars & Sense. A Kid’s Guide to Using- not Losing- Money. by Elaine Scott and David Clark, Charlesbridge, Watertown, 1916. A practical explanation of our financial system.  
  • Neale S. Godfrey’s Ultimate Kids’ Money Book. by Neale S. Godfrey and Randy Versogstraete. Simon & Schuster, New York, 1998. An illustrated introduction to personal finance. 
  • The New Totally Awesome Money Book for Kids. by Arthur Bochner, Rose Bochner, and Adriane Berg, Newmarket Press, 2009. For pre-teen and teenage entrepeneurs.
  • TeenVe$tor. The Practical Investment Guide for Teens and Their Parents. by Emmanuel Modu and Andrea Walker. teenvestor.com. Guidance on ways of earning an investment return.   
  • Street Wise. A Guide for Teen Investors. Janet Bamford, Bloomberg Press, Princeton, 2000. A narrow view of investing, focused on the time consuming of investing in stocks.
  • Exploring Business and Economics. Investing Your Money. Fred Barbash, Chelsea House Publishers, Philadelphia, 2001.
  • Confessions of a Scholarship Winner.  Kristina Ellis, Worthy Publishing, Brentwood, 2013. An inspiring story of a teenager’s quest for earning $50,000 in scholarships.  

internet reading

internet videos

Young Adults

books

  • The Index Card.  Why Personal Finance Doesn’t Have to be Complicated. Helaine Olen, Harold Pollack. Penguin Publishing, New York, 2013. Read my book review in http://wp.me/p1LlDo-KQ.
  • The Little Book of Common Sense Investing. John C. Bogle, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Hoboken, 2007.  The scope of this book concerns investing wisely and cheaply in the U.S. stock market. See book review in http://wp.me/p1LlDo-qI.  
  • All About Index Funds, second edition.  Richard A. Ferri, CFA. McGraw Hill, 2007. Author describes the market indices, high-risk index funds, and low risk index funds.
  • Investing Made Simple.  Anthony L Loviscek & Randy I Anderson, Broadway Books, New York, 1992, 2003, 2004. An excellent description of investment choices accompanied by the advantages and disadvantages of those investments.  
  • Stocks for the Long Run, 3rd Ed. Jeremy J. Siegel, McGraw-Hill, New York, 2002. An authoritative textbook on investing in stocks.  
  • Investing in REITs, Real Estate Investment Trusts. 4th Edition.  Ralph L. Block, Bloomberg Press, Hoboken, 2012. A thorough explanation of the risks and returns from REITs.  
  • How to make your money last.  The Indispensable Retirement Guide. Jane Bryant Quinn, 2016, Simon & Shuster, New York. 366 pages. The author is an acclaimed financial journalist who advises people about financing and reinventing life after leaving the workforce. Here’s a link to my book review, http://wp.me/p1LlDo-JE. 

internet reading

internet videos

  • short term savings: https://youtu.be/zer96OhQdxg . Creative ways of saving for current needs during periods of fluctuating monthly income (‘income inequality’).

Parents and Teachers

books

  • Dollars & Sense for Kids, by Janet Bodnar. Kiplinger Books, Washington D.C., 1999. Advice on teaching the value and use of money to children and young adults.
  • How millennials manage money.  https://www.navient.com/assets/about/who-we-are/April_2018-Money-Under-35-Managing-Money-report.pdf . This 2017 survey offers a profile of the financial behavior of young-adult Americans.
  • The Money Tree Myth: A Parents’ Guide to Helping Kids Unravel The Mysteries of Money. Gail Vaz-Oxlade, Stoddart Publishing, Toronto, 1996. A thorough volume of advice to parents on teaching their pre-school, pre-teen, and teenage  children to manage money for a lifetime.  
  • Kids and Money. Giving Them the Savvy to Succeed Financially.  Jayne A. Pearl. Bloomberg Press, Princeton, 1999. Author interviewed parents, used experience with own child, and sought advice of consultants to write this book for parents. 
  • Smart Money Smart Kids. Raising the Next Generation to Win with Money.  Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze.  Lampo Press, 2014, Brentwood. Author speaks with experience about recovering from catastrophic debt and teaching children how to avoid debt.  
  • Make Your Kid a Money Genius (even if you’re not). Beth Kobliner, Simon & Schuster, New York, 2017. See my book review in the following web site, http://wp.me/p1LlDo-P8.
  • Happy Money, The Science of Smarter Spending. Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton. Simon & Schuster, New York, 2013. Includes good ways and benefits of sharing money, illustrated by video in https://youtu.be/c39wUIKUSk0 .
  • Earn It, Learn It. Teach Your Child the Value of Money, Work, and Time Well Spent.  Alisa T. Weinstein, Sourcebooks, Naperville, 2011. The pre-teen child earns money from their parent by choosing a task from a career profile and completing it in a timely fashion.
  • Paying for School. How to Cover Education Costs from K to Ph.D.  Robert Brokamp, The Motley Fool, Inc. 2003. Discusses ways to finance the costs of attending private schools, colleges, and graduate schools.
  • Paying for College Without Going Broke.  2018 Edition. Kalman A. Chany with Geoff Martz. Penguin Random House. The Princeton Review, 2017. Authors offer strategies for selecting colleges and paying the cost. 
  • The Financial Diaries. How American Families Cope in a World of Uncertainty.  Jonathon Morduch and Rachel Schneider. 2017, 233 pages, Princeton University Press.  Authors describe the coping mechanisms of families trapped in conditions of financial insecurity.  
  • Can the Poor Save? Saving & Asset Building in Individual Development Accounts.  Mark Schreiner & Michael Sherraden.  Transaction Publishers, 2007. Low-income persons might benefit from an individual development account (IDA). 

internet reading

internet videos

Grandparents & Third parties

internet SITES

Copyright © 2019 Douglas R. Knight 

Childhood preparation for college (‘college prep’)

Today’s children [“generation Z”] have plenty of choices in careers and colleges.  There are pre-college and 2-year colleges as well the traditional 4-year colleges and graduate schools.  Trade schools are an option to liberal arts programs.  Online colleges offer courses taught in virtual classrooms.

Roughly half of college students complete their studies and graduate.  Those who dropped out early were either unprepared for the classroom, overwhelmed by stress, or couldn’t pay the bills.  Maybe the drop-out rate can be reduced by childhood preparation for college [‘college prep’] (ref 1, 2).  

COLLEGE PREP

Parents have considerable influence on fostering their children’s dreams and attitudes toward college.  High school and college students can receive help from their own ‘college team’ of parents, counselors, and trusted adults.  Here are the important milestones. 

before high school :

Save money for college.  College is expensive.  It’s cheaper to pay the cost by saving money beforehand than to pay interest on a student loan afterwards.  Parents: consider starting a “529 Savings” plan for your newborn child (ref 3, 4).  Later on, your growing child and other family members can help with additional contributions.

Dream about the future.  Pre-schoolers dream about being a grown-up.  It’s the perfect time for parents to discuss the jobs, trades, and professional careers of friends and family members.  School children can benefit from attending career presentations and visiting job sites.  Encourage your middle schoolers to read My Future My Way (ref 5).

Learn, Learn, Learn.  Every child should learn to manage money wisely.  Their training can begin by age 3 and continue throughout life (ref 6, 7, 8).  Every child should also learn to read well and perform homework assignments.  Tutor them, if necessary, and help them form good study habits (ref 9).

Enrichment.  Help your child participate in summer programs, after-school activities, community service, travel, clubs, teams, fellowships, and other enrichment programs (ref 10).      

Go to college?  College is optional, not mandatory.  Ask your child what they want to do after high school.  If they are strongly opposed to college, do they want to get a job or start a business?  There are job fairs and entrepreneurial training programs available to teens.  If they are either undecided or interested in college, help them explore college opportunities with the aid of campus visits.  Also encourage them to read My Future My Way if they haven’t already done so (ref 5).

during high school :

Shop for colleges.  Every college has a unique set of characteristics and opportunities.  College fairs allow students to discuss those features with a large selection of college representatives (ref 11).  Virtual and actual campus tours of interesting colleges help students prepare for college.

Assemble a College Team.  High school students should place more effort into college prep than parttime jobs.  They need a ‘team’ of parents, school faculty members, and other trusted adults to help with college prep.  Parents can facilitate the college selection, application, and enrollment processes.  For one reason, the required Free Application for Student Financial Aid (FASFA) requires timely parental input (ref 12).  Furthermore, parents can monitor their student’s adjustment to the transition year of college (ref 13).  School guidance counselors have valuable experience and information to share with the student.  Teachers and community leaders are wonderful sources of information and recommendation letters.  Grandparents can lend help, funds, and wisdom to the college prep process.

Use a checklist.  Here are some suggestions:

  • develop good study habits
  • decide what kind of college you want to attend and what you want to study
  • during the freshman year of high school, consult your school teacher and guidance counselor about; 
    • earning college credits in high school (ref 14)
    • taking college placement tests
    • applying for scholarships (ref 15)
    • choosing colleges
    • preparing for FAFSA (ref 12)
  • seek frequent advice and take early action!
  • select your preferred colleges
  • take care of financial matters
    • choose an affordable safety school 
    • compare college acceptance letters
    • re-visit acceptable schools and negotiate their offers of financial aid
    • minimize college expenses (ref 16).

during college :

Survive the transition year.  The first year of college [“transition year”] will likely be academically and emotionally stressful; that’s when dropping out of college is most likely to occur (ref 13).  Emotional issues may prevent graduation unless college students learn to manage the stress or parents intervene for signs of unusual behavior (ref 17).   

CONCLUSIONS

Parents have considerable influence on fostering children’s dreams and attitudes toward college.  Those with K-12 children might benefit from consulting a comprehensive checklist published by the U.S. Department of Education (ref 18). 

Middle school students can find helpful information in the pamphlet My Future, My Way by downloading it from the U.S. Department of Education (ref 5).  High school students must take charge of their college prep to have the best chance of success.  There is much to gain by an aggressive pursuit of scholarships, advanced placement courses, campus visits, and timely submission of the applications recommended by guidance counselors.  Students and parents may also benefit from consulting the “right fit” worksheet published by the Jed Foundation (ref 13).  

REFERENCES

1. Improving college graduation rates: a closer look at California State University. Jacob Jackson and Kevin Cook, Public Policy Institute of California, 2018. http://www.ppic.org/publication/improving-college-graduation-rates-a-closer-look-at-california-state-university/ . 

2. 10 ideas for improving community college completion rates.  Grace Chen, 2/14/2018, Community College Review.  https://www.communitycollegereview.com/blog/10-ideas-for-improving-community-college-completion-rates .

3.  Saving Early = Saving Smart!  Federal Student Aid, February 2018.  https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/sites/default/files/saving-early.pdf  

4.  FAMILY GUIDE TO COLLEGE SAVINGS. Joseph F. Hurley and Brian Boswell.  www.savingforcollege.com .  2016.

5. MY FUTURE, MY WAY.  FIRST STEPS TOWARD COLLEGE; A Workbook for Middle and Junior High School Students. Federal Student Aid, U.S. Department of Education.  StudentAid.gov. July, 2017. 

6. How to teach kids money smarts from as young as three.  SBS com/au, 7/15/16.  https://www.sbs.com.au/topics/life/culture/article/2016/07/13/how-teach-kids-money-smarts-young-three 

7. The Money Tree Myth: A Parents’ Guide to Helping Kids Unravel The Mysteries of Money.  Gail Vaz-Oxlade, Stoddart Publishing, Toronto, 1996.

8.  Teaching Kids about money.  ASIC’s MoneySmart Financial Guidance You Can Trust. 5/29/18.  https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/life-events-and-you/families/teaching-kids-about-money 

9.  Helping Your Child. U.S. Department of Education, 9/17/2008.  www.ed.gov/parents/academic/help/hyc.html

10.   The value of out-of-school time programs.  Jennifer Mcombs, Anamarie Whitaker, and Paul Yoo.  2017, Rand Corporation.  http://www.wallacefoundation.org/knowledge-center/Documents/The-Value-of-Out-of-School-Time-Programs.pdf 

11.  NACAC national college fairs.  https://www.nacacfairs.org 

12.  Overview of the Financial Aid Process. www.YouTube.com/FederalStudentAid  

13.  EMOTIONAL HEALTH & YOUR COLLEGE STUDENT.  A GUIDE FOR PARENTS.  Alan A. Axelson and Donna Satow, Jed Foundation, www.TransitionYear.org .

14.  AP Students. https://apstudent.collegeboard.org/home 

15.  Finding and applying for scholarships.  StudentAid.gov/scholarships 

16.  Managing college costs. https://www.mycollegeoptions.org/Core/SiteContent/Students/Advice/College-Resource-Center/For-Parents/Paying-For-College/Managing-College-Costs.aspx 

17. 3 Attending College in Transition Year, Student Edition. 2012, The Jed Foundation.  http://www.transitionyear.org/student/intro.php

18. COLLEGE PREPARATION CHECKLIST.  Federal Student Aid, U.S. Department of Education.  July, 2016.  https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/sites/default/files/college-prep-checklist.pdf

Copyright © 2018 Douglas R. Knight