Teaching Economics with Children’s Literature: The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble With Money


The book, The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble With Money, written by Stan and Jan Berenstain helps to teach the young child about saving money  for the future.  Brother  and sister bear  didn’t know very much about money.  They knew how to spend money every chance they had.  They never saved money so Mama Bear was becoming concerned their spendthrift ways. Mama and Papa Bear try to teach the cubs about money by using figures of speech … “You must think I’m made of money” “You must think money grows on trees” but Papa Bear teaches the cubs about money by working, earning money, and saving for a rainy day.  Through various jobs, the cubs are able to learn how to save their money and put it in the bank to earn interest.                                                             

Curriculum Connection

The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble With Money is an excellent book to use with first graders when teaching an economics lesson on saving  for the future to purchase goods and services.  It also incorporates the concepts of making choices.  The book correlates with the VA SOL 1.8 and 1.9.

Additional Resources 

1. Lesson involving saving money using the book A Chair for My Mother.                 

2. An interactive website for grades k-5 on economic skills. Just click on your grade level.  

3. Lesson plan to go along with The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble With Money.  Children will create critter banks in which they will begin to save money.

General Information

Book: The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble With Money
Author: Stan and Jan Berenstain
Publisher: Random House
Publication Date: 1983
Pages: 32
Grade Range: k-2
ISBN: 0394859170