Why is Greg's mother concerned about Greg's fascination with money in Andrew Clements's Lunch Money?

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Tamara K. H. eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In chapter 3 of Andrew Clements's Lunch Money, Greg's mom explains her concern about Greg's obsession with earning money: she thinks it's unusual for a child.

By chapter 3 of the story, Greg gets the idea to start selling gum and candy to the kids at school as a new way to make money since Greg sees so many kids carry spare change to school. He soon gets concerned, however, because the kids carry the gum and candy they buy from him into class, which is "against school rules" (18). Greg fears getting into trouble with the principal, so he thinks of something new to sell—toys. On the internet, Greg finds a website that sells "toys and souvenirs and gadgets" very cheaply (19), so he asks his mother for permission to use her credit card. Greg can immediately pay her back in cash, so she agrees. Still, she expresses her worries to her husband about Greg's obsession with earning money. In her mind, Greg is not acting like a normal child, and she wants him to enjoy his childhood.

Her husband doesn't share her concern. He sees Greg as a hard worker and wishes the rest of their kids would work as hard as Greg. He also sees Greg as participating in normal childhood activities, like drawing, reading, and playing sports, so he doesn't think Greg is missing out on any childhood fun just because he also works hard.