Follow Your Money: Who Gets It, Who Spends It, Where Does It Go?
Written by Kevin Sylvester and Michael Hlinka
Illustrated by Kevin Sylvester
The times they are a changing. In today’s world selling and buying has become as easy as turning on the computer and going to any of the hundreds of online merchants — Amazon being the largest and best known of them all. Although there are built-in safeguards, theoretically even young children can make purchases on the net (log into their parent’s account, for example.) This book’s purpose is to empower its readers with the knowledge to understand the whole money cycle.
In easily comprehensible language the authors explain the complex web that starts with the creation of a product and ends with its final dissemination. The book is a series of examples of everyday goods and produce, organized under headings that sixth graders, and up can relate to. The first study is an analysis of a breakfast consisting of bacon, eggs, bread and juice, and the numbers are eye-opening.
On a $3.00 packet of bacon the farmer’s profit is just 10c. Of course all numbers are estimates, but the ratio of total cost to profit remains about the same. The authors start the journey by advising us that the “prices in the book are only estimates…so don’t go into your local store and say ‘Sylvester and Hlinka tell me this apple should only cost 10c.’”
And it is a journey of discovery as the readers learn of the various costs at each stage: creation, distribution, retail to the customer. Why does the price of gas affect the price of every other thing? What is the gold standard? These are interesting discussion points, leading easily into economic theory. For the younger readers teachers can build reading activities around the chapters dealing with things they are familiar with, like milk, and juice, and books and backpacks.
Worth and value, credit and debit cards, bank operations, the readers gets an overview of all elements of everyday life, and becomes a more informed consumer. Definitely a book for school and library reading lists.
- Title: Follow Your Money: Who Gets It, Who Spends It, Where Does It Go?
- Author: Kevin Sylvester and Michael Hlinka
- Illustrator: Kevin Sylvester
- Publisher: Annick Press, 2013
- Reviewer: Anjali Amit
- Format: Paperback, 56 pages
- ISBN: 978-1-55451-480-9
- Genre: Nonfiction, Social Studies
- Lexile Score: 1120