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Virtual Economics

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Lesson 13: The Working World
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 3-4
Human capital consists of the skills, knowledge, and other factors, such as health, that improve an individual's ability to produce goods and services. One reason people earn different incomes for different jobs is that they differ in the quantity and quality of their human capital.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Work, Employment, Human capital, Unemployment,

Unit 4: Lesson 16 - Entrepreneurs and the Interdependence of Buyers and Sellers
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
People often think of themselves as consumers, but not as producers. In this lesson, students will meet business owners, managers, and entrepreneurs so that they can identify with them and perhaps aspire to start their own business someday. Students should recognize that business owners depend on consumers to help them earn a living. Students should come away from this lesson realizing that "We...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Alternative, Choice, Consequence, Consumer, Entrepreneur, Human capital, Innovation, Interdependence, Invention, Interview, Opportunity cost, Physical capital, Production, Work,

Lesson 4: Why Do People Go to School?
Learning, Earning and Investing: Grades 4-5 Lessons
The students look at a simple chart relating education level with average annual income. From the data the students generalize that people with more education usually earn more income. They learn that human capital refers to the knowledge, skills, talent, health, values and experience that people bring to the workplace. Working in small groups, the students receive information about the budgets of...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Budget, Expenses, Fixed expenses, Human capital, Income, Variable expenses

Theme 1: Lesson 1 - Earning Income
Financial Fitness for Life: Steps to Financial Fitness - Grades 3-5 - Teacher Guide
In this lesson, students play a guessing game to identify various occupations. Then they consider some of the education, skills, and talents required for those occupations. They analyze the connection between human capital and wages.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Income, Human resources, Human capital, Wage, Investment in human capital, Goods and services,

Unit 2: Lesson 9 - I Am a Bundle of Human Capital
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
Students will recognize that they have many skills.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Alternative, Human capital, Knowledge, Skill,

Unit 2: Lesson 10 - School Is an Investment in Human Capital
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
Students will recognize that development of human capital increases the quantity and quality of alternatives available to them now and in the future. They will also take responsibility for their education.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Human capital, Investment in human capital, Knowledge, Skills,

Unit 3: Lesson 11 - Workers Use Other Resources
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
Students will define resources as things that people can use to produce goods or services. They will identify human capital as a resource, identify examples of land, and identify examples of physical capital. Students will also recognize how capital resources help workers do their jobs faster, easier, and/or better.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, Human capital, Land resources, Physical capital, Resources,

Lesson 14: Orange Juice Jubilee
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 3-4
The simulation is a two-lesson unit designed to serve as a culminating activity for the review of economic concepts taught in the pervious thirteen lessons.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Division of labor, Decision making, Productive resources, Human capital, Interdependence, Market economy, Supply, Demand, Price, Collateral, Interest, Entrepreneurship,

Lesson 19: Leave the Cooking to Me
Teaching Economics Using Children's Literature
Leave the Cooking to Me is a humorous, yet touching story of a young girl's responsibility for keeping meals on the table for her single-parent mother and her little sister. Shirley Merton decides to take this daily chore a step further. Without her mother's knowledge. Shirley, a.k.a. Vanessa, opens her own catering business. Her enthusiasm for her new job keeps her from becoming discouraged w...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Entnrepreneur, Opportunity Cost, Human Capital, Profit, Productive Resources, Human Resources, Specialization, Costs

Lesson 12: The Tortilla Factory
Teaching Economics Using Children's Literature
The Tortilla Factory is a simple, yet enjoyable way to introduce the concept of production to your students. The book very simply explains the process of producing tortillas, from collecting the productive resources to marketing the final product. Students will learn the differences between the natural resources, capital resources, and human resources used in production.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Natural Resources, Capital Resources, Human Capital, Interdependence, Productive Resources, Human Resources, Investment

Lesson 21: Resources for the Publishing Company
Exploring the Marketplace: The Community Publishing Company - Teacher Resource Manual
In this lesson, you and your class begin to make decisions about the kid of book you will produce. The class also speculates on the resources necessary to produce the book and the cost of the resources.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Business, Consumer, Opportunity cost, Producer, Production, Resources,

Lesson 2: Production - How We Get the Goods and Services We Want
Play Dough Economics
In this lesson, students will learn that to get goods and services people must engage in production; that producers use productive resources to provide goods and services; the difference between the three basic productive resources: natural resources, human resources (labor), and capital resources.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Goods and services, Production, Productive resources, Entrepreneur, Producer, Consumer

Lesson 5: Dacian Masks
Resources A to Z
After learning about the Dacians who lived about 2000 years ago in the area now known as Romania, students make ancient Dacian masks. Students classify the different productive resources used to produce masks as natural resources, human resources, and capital goods, and identify the intermediate goods they used in the production process. Although this lesson focuses on Dacian masks, other ancien...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Producers, Productive Resources, Human Resources, Natural Resources, Capital Goods (Capital Resources), Intermediate Goods

Lesson 6: Circles within Circles
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 3-4
A market is a setting in which people buy and sell goods and services and resources. A market economy is an economic system in which most goods, services, and resources are exchanged by private households and businesses. Prices are determined by buyers and sellers making exchanges in private markets. Americans live in a market-oriented economy.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Goods, Services, Resources, Market, Income, Revenue, Consumers, Producers, Profit,

Lesson 5: Opportunity Cost (Producers) - Producers Have To Choose, Too
Play Dough Economics
In this lesson, students will learn that producers, as well as consumers, have to make choices about how to use scarce resources; that these choices also have opportunity costs.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Scarcity, Opportunity cost, Producer, Productive resources

Lesson 2: Service with a Smile
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 3-4
People satisfy relatively unlimited wants by consuming goods and services produced with limited resources. A good is something tangible, such as a book or an apple. A service is something that one person does for someone else. Productive resources are used to produce a good or services.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Goods, Services, Productive resources, Natural resources, Human resources, Capital resources,

Unit 2: Lesson 7 - Goods and Services, Work and Workers
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
Both men and women do work and it is done in the home and outside the home. In this lesson, students begin to understand and value work in all of its forms.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Good, Service, Work, Worker,

Lesson 3: Dandy Dollars Takes a Trip
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 5-6
A market (price) system coordinates economic activity through markets. There are hundreds of thousands of different markets that are interrelated and usually dependent upon one another. The circular flow of economic activity is a model of the flow of goods and services and resources in the marketplace.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Goods, Services, Resources, Market, Circular flow of economic activity, Income, Revenue,

Lesson 6: Work Pays
Resources A to Z
Discussing parent jobs and reading a story help students learn about human resources. Students work at home and produce goods and services by helping their families. They receive beans from the teacher as income for their work. This experience allows students to link the idea that income is received for work performed.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Human Resources, Goods, Services, Income

Unit 2: Lesson 8 - The Work I Do
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
Too often, children don't understand why they are in school. They begin to think about this more as they grow older. In this lesson, children learn that their activities in school are work, and their work is as important as work done by adults.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Work, Worker,

ONLINE LESSONS:

online How Labor Got Its Day
If you asked students what comes to mind first when they think of Labor Day, what do you think they would say? The last days of summer? A family picnic? Shopping the Labor Day sales? The purpose of this lesson is to broaden and deepen student understanding of the Labor Day holiday. Students will learn why workers organized unions during the nineteenth century to fight for higher pay and better wor...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Producers,Production,Labor,Labor Market,Labor Union,Profit,Insurance

online Ben & Jerry's Flavor Graveyard
Ben & Jerry are producers of ice cream. Even if they produce ice cream for the entire nation, they still must make choices on which flavor to produce! Scarce resources force them to make a choice!
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Choice,Entrepreneurship,Producers,Productive Resources,Scarcity

online Booker T. Washington:"Fifty Cents and a Dream"
Young Booker T. Washington had a dream. That dream was to use the resources at his disposal to earn the money necessary to get an education that would allow him and others to become financially secure. This lesson based on the picture book "Fifty Cents and a Dream: Young Booker T. Washington" by Jabari Asim challenges young students to make connections between history and economic concepts.
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Capital Resources,Decision Making,Economic Growth,Human Resources,Income,Productive Resources,Scarcity,Specialization,Capital,Job

online Mystery Workers
In this lesson students review the concepts of goods, services, and producers using the Internet to locate examples of each in a teacher's classroom. They learn about the three kinds of resources necessary to produce goods and provide services locating examples from a picture tour of the Crayola Factory. Through interviews they learn about the work of the people in their families and draw ...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Goods,Natural Resources,Producers,Services

online Hey, Mom! What's for Breakfast?
In this lesson students working in cooperative groups will: 1.Discuss food items they consume for breakfast. 2.Investigate elements of foreign culture, particularly food. 3.Use map skills to locate selected foreign nations. 4.Increase their knowledge of the these definitions: Economic wants are things people would like to have. Goods and services are provided to fulfill these wants....
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Consumers,Economic Wants,Goods,Producers,Productive Resources,Services

online From Butterflies to Buffaloes
Nature tourism, also known as ecotourism, is a fast growing segment of the tourism industry. In this lesson, students learn what ecotourism is and explore how conservation of our natural resources can be profitable.
Grade(s): 3-5, 6-8
Concepts: Markets,Natural Resources,Producers,Profit Motive

online To Be or Not To Be?
This lesson guides students through web sites that examine careers that are typically of interest to 3rd- through 5th-grade students. By completing the steps outlined in the lesson, the students will explore careers and report their findings.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Human Resources,Human Capital,Investment

online Why Work Now?
Why do people work so hard? Why aren't you just assigned a job that you are interested in and get paid as much as the next guy? This lesson will show you why employers want the best workers that their money can buy!
Grade(s): 3-5, 6-8
Concepts: Human Resources,Human Capital,Investment

online A Chair for My Mother
In the story, A Chair for My Mother, a little girl and her family save money in a jar to buy a chair after their furniture is destroyed in a fire. In this lesson, students will learn that characters in the book are human resources who save part of the income they earn. Students will identify other human resources and state how the mental and physical work of those human resources allows them to ea...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Human Resources,Income,Saving

online Economic Spotter: Resources During World War II
In World War II pennies were made of steel and zinc instead of copper and women were working at jobs that men had always been hired to do. Why? Because during war times, scarcity forces many things to change!
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Capital Resources,Choice,Human Resources,Natural Resources,Opportunity Cost,Productive Resources,Scarcity,Technological Changes,Human Capital,Investment

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