Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Economics Through Free Comics

A very grateful hat tip to Lori of Freely Educate and Annie of Learn At Every Turn for blogging about these comic books from the US Federal Reserve.

These comics are 100% free! I like the nostalgic, old-fashioned style of illustrations quite well. The language isn't too simplistic, neither is it too complicated. I would guess it should be accessible even to an interested, younger elementary-aged student but I do think kids younger than six or seven will need parental assistance with terminology etc.

Our books (reprinted editions of 2008-2010) arrived today in the mail, about a week after I'd ordered them. Very good timing, since the kiddo has been a little put off by an uneasy tummy and wants to recline on his bean bag and do nothing else but read.

I've only had a chance to read two booklets so far so let me give you a peek into these. Each booklet is about 24 pages long and in full color.

A Penny Saved (pix above) describes why saving is important and introduces terms like compound interest, liquidity, inflation, stocks and dividends. Not bad for a 24-pager that takes less than 30 minutes to read! Quite a bit of tongue in cheek humor too.

Once Upon A Dime introduces concepts like trading/ bartering and the convenience of using currency instead of goods to trade through a slightly silly but still enjoyable tale about the inhabitants of an imaginary island. It also talks about the introduction of paper money and moves on to laws of supply and demand.

Other titles we received:
The Story of Money
The Story of Banks
The Story of Inflation
The Story of Monetary Policy
The Story of Foreign Trade and Exchange
The Story of Checks and Electronic Payments
The Story of the Federal Reserve System
Too Much Too Little

A quick flip through shows that most of the books were written by a different team of writers and illustrated by one of three or four artists.

Get your copies at The Federal Reserve System Publications Catalog's Comics Page. If you'd like to see sample pages of The Story of Money, click here.

If the kiddo likes these well and wants to learn more, I have it in mind to find a used copy of The Cartoon Introduction to Economics. If anyone has a review to share on this book, I'd love to hear it! Other books I have a mind to check out:
Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?
Show Me The Money


  1. You are welcome!

    We just got ours yesterday. And perfect timing as Kipp starts in two weeks with a unit on economics.

    I just love it when things come together! :)

  2. Really nice blog.

    A comment on economics--I was just wondering, since the comics are free, how did the authors and illustrators get paid?

    Might be something to bring up in terms of economics and jobs.

  3. Oh yes, yes...these are fabulous ones! I still have ours from years ago! i also recommend the Story of the money The Story of Money by Betsy Maestro, Money Sense for Kids by Hollis Page Harman, Growing Money: A Complete Investing Guide for Kids by Gail Karlitz, Kids Guide to Money Cent$, The by Keltie Thomas, The Stock Market (How Economics Works) by Donna Jo Fuller, many more actually. There is a site that lets you follow your dollar online too...I have some books listed on economics on my blog..I think?! The cartoon guide is great and my kids have enjoyed them; but with a bit more background from other books would prep a child who does not like plain colorless pages...just a thought! And some kids to whom I recommended these books apparently did not get the humor in them...


  4. Ditto Annie!
    Heather, what an excellent idea :) Thanks for visiting!
    And Subadra, thanks so much for your thoughts! If he decides he wants to knwo more I'll be sure to check out used copies or the library first :)

  5. Hi! Just thought I'd say thanks for the shout-out. I'm so glad you enjoyed the comics. When I wrote the post, I hadn't yet received ours, I don't think, so didn't have nearly the write-up you have here. I'll absolutely have to go back and order some more! ~ Lori @ FreelyEducate.com


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