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Book Review: I Wish They Taught Money in School & Money Grows On Trees

I remember the day I opened a bank account so clearly. I was 14 years old and had been stashing all my extra money from my allowance in a drawer in a desk in my room. And our helper, Nisa, who has been with my family till this day, said that I had enough to open a bank account and should talk to my mom about it.

Nisa certainly knew something that I didn’t, because she herself has worked hard and saved to have her own home and her own car, which she drives to work at my parents place every day.

But to go back to the story, my mom and I went straight to the bank that week where I opened an account that has been my account till today. My formula has always been to put more in than I take out annually, but that simple way of thinking isn’t enough to make my money grow for me. I’m happy to report that there are now books to help you invest your money properly and how to make it reach its full potential.

I Wish They Taught Money in School is a no-nonsense financial advice book by two friends Sharon Que and Clarissa Seriña-De La Paz that teaches you how to make your money grow based on their own smart business or employee practices. This book was launched in 2013 and made it to National Bookstore’s Top Best Sellers list for five consecutive months.

Written in two perspectives, one from an employee standpoint I Wish They Taught Money in School: So I’m Not Dependent on my Paycheck and another from an entrepreneur’s I Wish They Taught Money in School: So I Can Start My Own Business Right Away, the “book seeks to educate Filipinos of all ages on money matters like learning how to value money, how to make money work for you and to encourage budding entrepreneurs to start their business journey now.”

With such success from their first book, these wonder woman decided to help others even further by writing their second book Money Grows on Trees

From their own press kit, here is the reason why they decided to write this additional book:

“We wrote this book as a complement to our first one. In “I Wish They Taught Money In School,” we revealed how we handled our money, and gave tips on personal financing. We received an outpour of feedback from that, with many people eager to tell us how we have helped upgrade their lives; but many others asked for advice to figure out why they couldn’t seem to get out of a rut. It dawned on us that however many tips we shared or however many ways there are to become rich, it will not amount to much without the real prerequisite to wealth — a mindset of abundance. Once again, written in two perspectives, we share personal stories and our own money blueprint wishing to inspire our readers to learn more about money and up the notch of their financial literacy.” 

Here is some additional information about the authors:


We, Clarissa S. de la Paz and Sharon W. Que, started out as mentor and mentee, and progressed to being board game buddies that revealed our shared passion for spreading financial literacy and proper money management. We both believe that becoming a millionaire is not and should not be regarded as plain, wishful thinking but as something achievable — it can be done whether you are an employee or an entrepreneur.


Clarissa may not have a rags-to-riches story to tell, but she learned the value of money at a young age. Her parents’ upbringing played an integral role in instilling the proper values throughout her childhood. She is very fortunate to learn all of these from her parents unlike other children during her age. She was already budgeting and saving up as early as grade school. When she turned 12, the world of the stock market had been introduced to her. Normally, after graduation employment is the next step and Clarissa also chose to have a regular paycheck. This is a normal practice like to many other Filipinos; but unlike others, she knew that monthly wages alone did not equate to financial stability. Clarissa’s interests in investment strengthened her financial literacy. She may not have the formal training but her passion to investment drove her to learn more in a cellular level. She believes that “If you work for money 8 hours a day, your money should work for you 24 hours a day.”


Sharon grew up in an environment where business was a way of life. She fondly recalls that she learned to write her name in the same area where her mom entertained business clients and guests. She was bitten by the business bug at the age of 10, when she was asked to help with the accounting of her family’s business. Her fascination for money management began when she held bank checks for the first time, and it thrilled her. For Sharon, she knew that being the COO (Child of Owner) was not her ultimate end. Ultimately, she wanted to independently earn her million by daring into her own business ventures. Sharon has established a number of successful businesses, from realty to lifestyle projects. She acknowledges that her victories are products of hard work and a clear vision on goals. Sharon likes to teach money awareness to those who wants to manage money and who wishes to learn about financial freedom. Sharon believed that going into business can be difficult for first timers, but once the right foundations have been set, anyone can earn money without actively working for it in the long run.

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