Personal Finance Book Review – Money-Smart Kid$

By: Gail Vaz-Oxlade (2005)

Published by Collins (An imprint of Harper Collins Publishers Ltd.)

2 Bloor Street East, 20th Floor, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4W1A8

ISBN 978-1-44341-229-2

Book Price: $6.99

Canada’s #1 personal finance expert

Gail Vaz-Oxlade is the #1 bestselling author of Debt-Free Forever, Never Too Late, and It’s Your Money. She hosts two television shows, Princess and Till Debt Do Us Part, and is a columnist for Chatelaine and Her no-nonsense approach to finance has helped thousands to begin a new life of financial free living.

Financial confidence and control

With 5 informative chapters, Gail Vaz-Oxlade teaches children financial confidence and control. She covers, benefits of giving children an allowance (Ch. 1), the ages and stages of financial responsibility (Ch. 2), training kids to wisely use credit cards (Ch. 3), starting early in life with savings (Ch. 4), and wisdom for spending habits (Ch. 5).

Practical, instructional approach to financial education

With a personable tone, Gail Vaz-Oxlade also confronts with a practical and informative message. Her approach is framed by words such as, “… an allowance not only provides kids with the bucks they need to experiment with saving and spending, it also gives them the responsibility for keeping their money safe and using it wisely.”

Vaz-Oxlade challenges readers in order to help them train their children. In the case of financial responsibility she expresses, “If you want a responsible and independent young adult, keep your hand out of your pocket and let the consequences of your child’s behaviour teach some important lessons.” Experience can be a blunt reinforcing tool!

Gail’s primary approach is centered on practical application rather than mere information. She guides parents to “… show your kids that balancing today’s needs with tomorrow’s wants sometimes means you have to find ways to spend less money.” Her approach does not tend towards a message of lack rather, a message of restraint.

Gail displays her prominent method of communication, being instruction. A discussion about savings, reveals, “Tell him there are lots of things we have to plan before we can pay for them… setting aside a little money… “

The prominence of instruction in Gail’s approach also contains informative clues. Sharing on debt she reveals, “Making the point that inconsistent repayment affects a person’s ability to borrow in the future.”

Children with financial competence

Gail Vaz-Oxlade teaches parents how to bring children up with financial wisdom and practical competence!

Success Step: List, in point form, a plan for practically educating your children (allowance, savings, giving, etc.).

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