‘M is for Money’: Middletown High School teacher publishes children’s book to start kids thinking about personal finance at early age – Yahoo News

Apr. 2—After Rob Phelan’s son was born, he started looking for a book he could use to help explain basic money concepts to him — something age-appropriate that approached personal finance in a fun and easy-to-understand way.

He couldn’t find one. So, Phelan, a math and personal finance teacher at Middletown High School, decided to write one himself.

“M is for Money,” a colorful picture book that walks readers through the ABCs of dollars and cents, was published Nov. 13. It is Phelan’s second published work, after “The Simple StartUp,” his 2020 guidebook for students interested in starting their own businesses.

“I wanted to write a book that would help encourage parents, caregivers and teachers to start talking about money in a comfortable and safe way,” Phelan said.

Written for a target audience of 3- to 8-year-olds, “M is for Money” focuses on a letter of the alphabet on each page and a money word that starts with that letter. The book explains each word in simple language and provides an illustration that shows the word being used in a positive way, Phelan said.

Along the way, the character Stash the Squirrel engages readers by asking them questions about each focus word: “What would you use an allowance for?” “What can you buy for $1?” “How do you like to help people?” “What are some ways you could earn money?”

“It provides a really easy platform for the kid and the adult to start talking about money and allows the adults to maybe avoid [embarrassment] that we might feel because we haven’t handled money really well in the past,” Phelan said.

Phelan hasn’t always been the personal finance champion he is now.

When he first started dating the woman who would become his wife, she was the “money person” in their relationship, as he put it. But before they got married, she told him she wanted his help in making financial decisions and asked him to learn more about how to handle money.

So, he started diving into personal finance, he recalled, listening to podcasts and eventually hosting a workshop at Catoctin High School, where he was teaching at the time, that allowed parents and teenagers to learn about money together.

He also teamed up with “Choose FI,” a Richmond, Virginia-based podcast, to create a free financial literacy curriculum for grades pre-K through 12.

Financial responsibility “should be considered a core life skill that we should be learning in school,” Phelan said. He pointed to research that shows students who learn about personal finance in school go on to make better …….

Source: https://news.yahoo.com/m-money-middletown-high-school-154700593.html

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