Smart Money, Smart Kids by Dave Ramsey #Giveaway

by Jennifer Donovan

5M4B disclosure

smart money smart kids

I’m fortunate that we’ve lived pretty debt-free lives. We did borrow money for inexpensive cars when we were first married over 20 years ago, but the last three cars we’ve bought, we bought with cash, and we also drive them for about 10 years before replacing them. I attribute that to the fact that my husband was raised that way, and so it makes sense that I want to model good financial sense for my children so they do not find themselves burdened by the crushing weight of debt or living beyond their means when they are adults.

Is this an important topic in your home? Do you consider it a part of the character that you are trying to build in your children?

There is nothing that irritates me more than my children whining about what they do have when I can look around and see all that they do have. Though we have the financial resources to give them more than we do, I don’t think that buying $300 devices for 7-year-olds is the pattern I want to set. Read my post to see the 3 life lessons I’ve taught my kids about money. Watching my 9-year-old save up for his own Nintendo 3DS was pretty amazing.

The book is co-written by Dave Ramsey and his adult daughter Rachel Cruze. Take a look at the quick two minute preview to see what it’s all about:

This book really did answer all the questions I had about finance for kids and explained why Dave Ramsey does things the way he does. The principles can be used with preschoolers on up to teens and young adults. The sections on teenagers are incredible, including debt-free college living, and instilling the right skills while they are younger to help insure that you can make that happen.

Although we model good financial sense to our kids, I don’t know how intentional we’ve been at addressing the subject head on. Entitlement is a big theme in the book, and a problem with this generation:

If you are raising children in North America today, you are at war. Whether you want to be or not, whether you realize it or not, you are at war with contemporary culture. The heart of your child is under siege by endless marketing, pervasive peer pressure, and a choking shallowness from our contemporary culture (ARC p. 179-180).

The fact this his daughter Rachel is able to share her perspective makes the book even stronger. She recalls the lessons she learned as a child — sometimes the hard way and other times the easy way — as well as how it has served her as a married adult.

The book comes out on April 22. If you preorder by April 21, you will receive 3 free items, including the audiobook and the ebook and a legacy lesson, all worth an additional $50. You can order the book directly from or from other online retailers like amazon then just submit your form online to get the benefits.

Enter to win

One of you (U.S. only) will win a copy of Smart Money, Smart Kids

. Follow the instructions below to enter once or multiple times.

Email Author    |    Website About Jennifer Donovan

Jennifer Donovan has been a part of the 5 Minutes for Mom team since 2007. She writes product reviews, covers events, and manages the 5 Minutes for Books weekly column and website. She lives in Houston and blogs at Snapshot about life with her family.

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{ 46 comments… read them below or add one }

1 kimmie April 21, 2014 at 1:10 am

We are trying hard to give our children less stuff & more quality time as a family. Sometimes it is hard when you hear all about what their friends have.


2 Jennifer Donovan April 21, 2014 at 2:50 pm

Like I sad, he deals with entitlement, but he also talks about why it’s so dangerous for us as parents to give in to that. That will probably help you keep your reserve.


3 Migdalia - April 21, 2014 at 4:32 am

My question deals with allowance. When should you stop giving an allowance and request a child work for the money?


4 Jennifer Donovan April 21, 2014 at 2:48 pm

This book deals with this in a very thorough way!


5 Bin April 21, 2014 at 8:20 am

We’ve done both chore-based and non allowances for our kids. I would be interested in seeing the reasoning behind using one over the other and at what ages.


6 Jennifer Donovan April 21, 2014 at 2:49 pm

I thought he did a great job of explaining why.


7 Bin April 21, 2014 at 2:53 pm

Would love to win it and read it then! :)


8 Amber April 21, 2014 at 9:38 am

I think it is soooo important for kids to learn about finances when they are young this helps them make better choices when they grow up!!


9 Dianna Auton April 21, 2014 at 9:49 am

My biggest struggle is teaching it in a way that they will avoid many of the same mistakes we made in our life. I don’t want them to struggle like we have.


10 Jennifer Donovan April 21, 2014 at 2:51 pm

That’s Dave’s story as well! He made a lot of mistakes, so he had motivation to teach his kids a better way.


11 anne April 21, 2014 at 11:23 am

I want my children to understand when they are young how to handle money and to save and realize the importance and how this influences their decisions.


12 Annette W. (ThisSimpleHome) April 21, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Where to begin and what to do…what to buy for them if they have an allowance.

Honestly, I’ve been avoiding it because it just seems overwhelming. I just read Dave’s book and am definitely interested in this one, too.


13 Jennifer Donovan April 21, 2014 at 2:52 pm

I agree Annette — it DOES seem overwhelming, and there’s a lot that goes into it if you truly hand the reigns over to your teens in regards to handling money. I’m definitely going to make some changes.


14 LaVonne April 21, 2014 at 2:02 pm

We follow Dave’s principles in our life, but I really have a strong desire to instill this into my daughter and son.


15 Jennifer Donovan April 21, 2014 at 2:53 pm

You are already on the right track, so this will be a great new layer to add.


16 Laura April 21, 2014 at 2:42 pm

My husband and I do not have children yet, but we are hoping to start our family soon. We have been following Dave for years and were excited about the release of this book. I don’t have any specific questions yet, but I see that others have raised some very interesting topics of concern that I have not heard of. Hope to read this book soon!


17 Jessica T April 21, 2014 at 11:35 pm

Just knowing where the balance is between giving my kids freedom with their money and me having a bit of control over it.


18 Erica Brooks April 21, 2014 at 11:45 pm

What’s the best way to show younger children how to save money?


19 Gretchen April 22, 2014 at 12:38 am

I just finished the Total Money Makeover and wish I had learned much of that information when I was younger. I’m excited to help teach my kids the value of money, so they can appreciate what they have and be on strong footing when they are independent.


20 Christina April 22, 2014 at 2:51 am

our boys are both under 2, we struggle with ways to start teaching them early about being financially responsible, as this is something that neither of our families taught us.


21 DarcieN April 22, 2014 at 4:04 am

I have questions on the whole allowance thing. When to start, what to give it for.


22 Kristie April 22, 2014 at 9:36 am

My kids always want to spend their money as soon as they get it and I’d like to know a good way to teach them to save at their ages.


23 Brittany April 22, 2014 at 10:02 am

My husband and I are making a more conscious effort about buying frivolous things for our kids and making more of an effort to teach them to save for what they want. It is tough especially in the culture we live in. I would love to read this book. Thanks for the chance to win.


24 Jen Thomas April 22, 2014 at 10:07 am

My kids are all savers, like me, but they don’t have a goal for what they are really saving for.


25 Shelley April 22, 2014 at 10:22 am

My biggest struggle is telling grandparents that they have to stop giving him money! The do what they want and give my son money and toys for no occasion and after I tell them not to.


26 danielle April 22, 2014 at 10:45 am

My struggle is that I’ve recently become a stay at home mom and going from two incomes to one has been a challenge.


27 Natalie F April 22, 2014 at 11:04 am

Interested in this book. Right now, my challenge is trying to explain the concepts to my young children in ways they can really understand. And then also, getting other people on board. We have family members that over indulge our children, I know all Grandparents do, but it is excessive.


28 Meagan bs April 23, 2014 at 11:50 am

I just worry that even though my husband and I are frugal and are good with money that she won’t be.


29 Liz April 23, 2014 at 1:42 pm

I did not learn good money lessons growing up and am trying to reverse that. My kids are (by far) the poorest of their friends and we have to fight against the “well, x went to Disney World.” Our kids are pretty good about it, but it’s a struggle.

I am very proud that my kids are good about saving up for things and understanding that all of our money decisions are about spending money on x instead of y.


30 Shelah April 24, 2014 at 4:05 pm

If anything, my struggle with my kids about money is the motivation to go out there and find a job. My oldest is 16 and she needs some motivation but other than that, they are in the process of learning more about money.


31 Crystal Rose April 24, 2014 at 5:19 pm

I wonder when to give my daughter money.


32 vickie couturier April 25, 2014 at 6:57 am

we are trying to get them to understand that they earn their allowance it isn’t a gimmie


33 Pamela j April 25, 2014 at 8:40 am

Getting jobs and saving their money.
I think kids want what other kids have and sometimes that is not realistic.


34 Erinn S April 25, 2014 at 11:35 am

Understanding short term and long term savings guidelines


35 Fisher April 25, 2014 at 9:39 pm

I’m worried that I’ll never properly teach them about financial responsibilities. I try to set examples with my spending habits, but sometimes it is not the best decisions. I hope they just pick up the good habits.


36 Efi April 26, 2014 at 4:06 pm

I wanted to know what is the amount that would be OK to give my daughter as an allowance.


37 Daniel M April 28, 2014 at 10:54 pm

nothing as i don’t have any kids


38 anna April 29, 2014 at 11:43 am

how to afford college


39 Sadie B. April 29, 2014 at 1:55 pm

We are still trying to teach them how to save for the big things they want.


40 Shelagh April 29, 2014 at 11:53 pm

My question/struggle is what expenses the kids should be paying for with their allowance. We’ve never really defined that when we started giving our children allowances.


41 bonnie walker April 30, 2014 at 5:26 pm

I struggle getting my sons to do their chores done each week. I need the help around the house and it would give them some money.


42 Laura May 1, 2014 at 9:31 am

I have a hard time knowing what chores my son, age 7, should do simply because he is a member of the family and what chores he should do to earn his commissions.


43 Pat May 2, 2014 at 10:16 am

How to be happy with what they have and not covet what other kids have. There is such a thing as too much stuff. I’d like them to learn that.


44 Jennifer M May 2, 2014 at 11:14 am

Teaching them to value the things they have and appreciate things and that “money doesn’t grow on trees”.


45 claire May 2, 2014 at 6:12 pm

how much should i be putting in stocks every yr?


46 Laura Ari May 2, 2014 at 9:46 pm

My biggest question is when should a kid get a job?


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