Rupaiya Paisa Series

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REVIEW

Rupaiya Paisa Series

By : Usha Mukunda  /  2014
1.

Rupaiya Paisa Series - The World Of Money

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Rupaiya Paisa Series - The World Of Money
Author:
Mala Kumar
Illustrator:
Deepa Balsavar
16 pages
English
Rs 40.00
ISBN: 978-81-84793-54-3
Pratham Books, 
2013
2.

Rupaiya Paisa Series - How Money Travels

how_money_travels.png
Rupaiya Paisa Series - How Money Travels
Author:
Mala Kumar
Illustrator:
Deepa Balsavar
20 pages
English
Rs 40.00
ISBN: 978-81-84793-60-4
Pratham Books, 
2013
3.

Rupaiya Paisa Series - The Money Managers

The_money_managers.png
Rupaiya Paisa Series - The Money Managers
Author:
Mala Kumar
Illustrator:
Deepa Balsavar
20 pages
English
Rs 40.00
ISBN: 978-81-84793-66-6
Pratham Books, 
2013
4.

Rupaiya Paisa Series - Be Wise With Money

be_wise_with_money.png
Rupaiya Paisa Series - Be Wise With Money
Author:
Mala Kumar
Illustrator:
Deepa Balsavar
24 pages
English
Rs 40.00
ISBN: 978-81-84793-72-7
Pratham Books, 
2013
Tags : 
Concepts,
Overall Rating : 
8
Story/Content : 
4
Illustration : 
5
Language : 
4
Design : 
4

Non-fiction for children, written and published in India is a rare commodity. Excellent non-fiction is a pearl beyond price! Therefore when a book or series comes along authored by Mala Kumar whose writing has shape and meaning, and illustrated by Deepa Balsavar whose art work has been a source of delight, one turns to it with a good deal of anticipation. I am referring to a set of four books called the Rupaiya Paisa Series recently brought out in a colorful and attractive format by Pratham Books.

Book 1 is called The World Of Money and aims to introduce the concept and history of money in its various avatars over the years. After a brief look it goes on to talk about how one can earn, spend and save money along with a few tips that we as adults could use too.

In How Money Travels, Mala attempts to explain all the ways in which money is used, stored, dispersed and transacted.

Book 3 is all about Money Managers. The reader is introduced to people who manage our money, and why and how we use such ‘managers.’

The final book, called Be Wise With Money is a melange of advice to both children and adults on how to perceive wants and needs, how to plan a family budget and an explanation of how Governments help or hinder this process.

The author addresses her audience directly and has included interactive suggestions for the readers. The illustrations are eye-catching and evocative of the people one comes across in our daily lives.

However, one cannot escape the fact that the topic of money is a complex one and it would be hard even for an Amartya Sen to do justice to it in four slim books for children! Some questions do arise. What is the age group it is meant for? The overall appearance of the books makes us believe they are for a 8 or 10-year-old children. Book 1 seems to fit this age group but the subsequent books introduce concepts and ideas that are more appropriate for 12-year-olds and above. Perhaps the books could be used by a family reading and sharing the content together or in a group situation at school. Anecdotes about how chit funds originated and the notion of pygmy banks add to the appeal of the theme. However the full implications of these and other concepts like a ‘co-operative’, ‘insurance,’ ‘share-holder’ or ‘promoter’ need a greater level of maturity than the readership the book seems to be aiming at, going by the activities suggested. So there is a bit of a mismatch between the intent and the content.

The intent of the book is an excellent one - to introduce the notion of money to young people. Nowadays money is handed out to younger and younger children and conversely younger and younger children actually experience the lack of money and resort to crime, begging and what-have-you. Mala Kumar attempts to cover a range of issues around money and Deepa Balsavar’s expressive and imaginative illustrations help her pull it off.

As always, Pratham has priced these books at a very modest Rs. 40 each. Good value for money!!

Usha Mukunda has read children’s literature with great enjoyment for more than 30 years. In the process, she has resorted to many stratagems, games and ideas to bring children and books into joyous communion with each other. Reading books, sharing them with children, teachers and other librarians to elicit their responses has always been her approach to writing reviews.

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