[close window]
Virtual Economics

PRINT LESSONS:

Theme 2: Lesson 4 - The Grasshopper and the Ant
Financial Fitness for Life: Steps to Financial Fitness - Grades 3-5 - Teacher Guide
In this lesson, children use an adaptation of Aesop's fable, "The Grasshopper and the Ant," to learn about the trade-off between satisfying wants today and planning for the future. Children use the fable to examine their own behaviors and decisions about saving. They learn how interest provides an incentive to save. Writing their own fable provides the children with a creative way to express th...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Opportunity cost, Trade-offs, Saving, Interest,

Lesson 32: Choice Making
Exploring the Marketplace: The Community Publishing Company - Teacher Resource Manual
Once the books have been sold, the class decides what to do with the money left over (if any) after paying back the loan or credit and any other expenses incurred in the business. The teacher emphasizes that the money left over is payment to the class for all its hard work in the company. The students consider what choices are available to them, for such as charity or to buy more or new educatio...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Choice, Credit, Interest, Investment, Loan, Opportunity cost, Profit,

Theme 2: Lesson 5 - Why? How? Where?
Financial Fitness for Life: Steps to Financial Fitness - Grades 3-5 - Teacher Guide
This lesson provides some practical activities to extend students' understanding about how to make saving choices. Children set a goal, determine a strategy for saving, and decide how they will save to best achieve that goal. They can also learn the basics of using savings accounts.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Incentives, Opportunity cost, Saving, Saving goal,

Lesson 7: Widget Production
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 5-6
In order to produce an output of goods or services, a firm needs inputs or factors of production. Businesses must purchase natural, human, and capital resources. Entrepreneurship is provided by the owner or manager of the firm. These inputs can be combined in different ways to produce the firm's product.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Factors of production, Productivity, Increasing productivity, Opportunity cost, Division of labor, Specialization, Investment,

Lesson 13: A Chair for My Mother
Teaching Economics Using Children's Literature
When all their possessions were burned in a fire, a little girl, her mother, and grandmother save all their extra money to buy a special chair. The characters make choices to save in order to obtain something important to them.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Human Resources, Savings, Scarcity, Wages, Consumers, Opportunity Cost

Lesson 15: From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil Frankweiler
Teaching Economics Using Children's Literature
Eleven-year-old Claudia Kincaid feels that too much responsibility has been placed on her at home. To make her family appreciate her more, she decides to run away from home. Claudia persuades her younger brother, Jamie, to accompany her on a trip to a most unlikely place -- the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Scarcity, Savings, Price, Inflation, Goods and Services, Opportunity Cost, Interdependence

Lesson 10: Saving and Investing - Planning For the Future
Play Dough Economics
In this lesson, students will learn that individuals either save or consumer after-tax income; that saving has an opportunity cost - giving up current consumption; that consuming has an opportunity cost - giving up greater future consumption; that savings which are invested in the production or purchase of capital result in increased productivity, and create the possibility of greater future incom...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Saving, Investment, Income, Consumption, Opportunity cost, Choice, Productivity

Unit 1: Lesson 2 - Alternatives
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
In working on Choices and Changes, students should learn that they can ordinarily respond to events in their lives by alternative means, and that it is up to them in these cases to find an alternative that will result in a beneficial outcome. In Lesson 2, students begin to develop the skill of discovering alternatives. The point to be grasped is that people who find alternatives are more active ...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Alternatives, Goal, Obstacle,

Unit 1: Lesson 5 - Opportunity Cost
Choices and Changes: In Life, School, and Work - Grades 2-4 - Teacher's Resource Manual
In this lesson students will: Recognize the importance of identifying the opportunity cost of a potential choice; Use the concept of opportunity cost before making decisions; Avoid using the word "free."
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Opportunity cost,

Lesson 1: Choosing a House
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 5-6
Economics is a decision-making science based on the concept of scarcity. Scarcity occurs when economic wants are greater than the resources available to satisfy them. Scarcity requires decision making, and economizing is the process of choosing among alternatives in order to achieve particular goals.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Alternatives, Criteria, Opportunity cost, Trade-off,

Lesson 10: The Pencil Choice
Exploring the Marketplace: The Community Publishing Company - Teacher Resource Manual
In this lesson the students assume the role of consumers and choose among three pencils. They discuss wants, acceptable substitutes, and other factors that influence consumer decisions such as price, personal satisfaction, and knowledge of alternatives.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Choice, Opportunity cost, Price,

Lesson 8: Mini-Mall
Exploring the Marketplace: The Community Publishing Company - Teacher Resource Manual
Students participate in a market simulation. They assume the roles of consumers and producers as they buy and sell goods and/or services in the marketplace.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Consumer, Choice, Marketplace, Opportunity cost, Producer,

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 4: Olympic-Minded Decisions
Master Curriculum Guides in Economics: Teaching Strategies - 3-4
The basic economic question is how do people use their scarce resources to satisfy their unlimited wants wisely. They must make choices.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Decision making, Opportunity cost, Alternatives, Criteria,

Lesson 1: Stock Prices
Learning, Earning and Investing: Grades 4-5 Lessons
Newspaper and Internet listings of stock prices provide important information for investors. Gathering and understanding information found in the stock listings is an important life skill, and also a useful skill for students participating in stock market simulations. This lesson introduces information typically found in stock listings, focusing on the basic elements.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Decimal, Diversification, Fraction, Mixed number, Stock, Whole number

Chapter 3: Lesson 10 - Sherri Rejects a Sure Thing
The Great Economic Mysteries Book: A Guide to Teaching Economic Reasoning, Grades 4-8
Students describe an economic mystery and discuss various explanations of it. They use economic principles and true/false clues in reasoning out a solution to the mystery.
Grade(s): 3-5, 6-8
Concepts: Saving and Investing

Chapter 3: Lesson 16 - The Big Piggy Bank Mystery
The Great Economic Mysteries Book: A Guide to Teaching Economic Reasoning, Grades 4-8
Students describe an economic mystery and discuss various explanations of it. They use economic principles and true/false clues in reasoning out a solution to the mystery.
Grade(s): 3-5, 6-8
Concepts: Profit, Saving and Investing

Lesson 7: People Must Decide How to Allocate Income.
Children in the Marketplace: Lesson Plans in Economics for Grades 3 and 4
Economics involves the study of how people make choices necessitated by the condition of universal scarcity of resources in relation to human wants. One basic choice individuals must make when they earn or otherwise receive money is whether to spend their entire income on goods and services for consumption in the present or to put aside -- that is, save -- at least a portion of that income. Savi...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Saving, Investment, Profit, Resources,

Lesson 2: Savings Accounts and U.S. Savings Bonds
Learning, Earning and Investing: Grades 4-5 Lessons
People who want to save money can do so in various ways. One method is to use a savings account; another is to buy U. S. Savings Bonds. In this lesson, the students learn about these two methods of saving.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Decimal, Face value, Interest, Interest rate, Percent, Savings account, U.S. Savings Bond

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,

ONLINE LESSONS:

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

online The Grasshopper and the Ant
Understanding the concept of opportunity cost is critical for good decision making. The ability to identify the opportunity cost—the highest valued alternative that must be given up when another option is chosen—helps people to assess their alternatives.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Economic Wants,Opportunity Cost,Trade-off,Interest,Savings,Spend

online The ABCs of Saving
We save money to get things we can’t afford to buy now. Saving for the future requires patience but it can be worth it when we get what we want the most. Successful savings depends on three elements which are presented to students as the ABCs of saving. A is for Aim: setting a goal. B is for Bank: creating a place to put savings. C is for Coins and currency: making saving money a habit. Stud...
Grade(s): K-2, 3-5
Concepts: Money Management,Opportunity Cost,Trade-off,Savings,Trade-offs among Goals

online Uncle Jed's Barbershop
Students listen to the book Uncle Jed's Barbershop, about an African American barber who, despite significant setbacks, saves enough money to buy his own barbershop. From the story, students learn about saving, savings goals, opportunity cost, and segregation. The students participate in a card game to further investigate what it takes to reach a savings goal.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Opportunity Cost,Saving,Alternative

online Beatrice's Goat
This lesson from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis' EconLowdown site teaches students what it means to save and reach savings goals through the book Beatrice's Goat by Page McBrier.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Income,Opportunity Cost,Saving

online An Entreduction
This lesson illustrates the differences between inventions and innovations. It discusses what entrepreneurs are and their role with inventions and innovations.
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Entrepreneurship,Investing,Opportunity Cost,Profit Motive,Innovation

online The Story of Jack and the Bank Stalk
Fairy tales have always been used to give lessons about life. The story of Jack and the Bean Stalk is a good lesson about the importance of knowing about money and banks. The story of Jack asks the question, "What is money?"
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Banking,Exchange,Functions of Money,Interest Rate,Opportunity Cost,Currency,Money,Characteristics of Money

online Destination: Mars
Look up! Can you ever imagine standing on another planet and looking down at earth? We've been to the moon - now lets launch an expedition to Mars. Imagine all the preparation you will have to go through in order to have a safe and successful mission! You must decide what you should take, how you will prepare yourself and carefully think through each and every choice – once you lift ...
Grade(s): 3-5
Concepts: Choice,Human Resources,Opportunity Cost,Scarcity

online WIDGET PRODUCTION: Producing More, Using Less
In the first part of the lesson students take a quiz to review the major concepts taught in Lesson 7, "Widget Production," from Master Curriculum Guide in Economics: Teaching Strategies 5-6. Students then search the web for examples of the many ways in which productivity has been increased over the years. Finally, they identify a situation where an increase in productivity could ...
Grade(s): 3-5, 6-8
Concepts: Division of Labor,Specialization,Investment,Productivity

online The Mystery of the Amazing Farmers
In this lesson you will be taking on the role of an an investigative reporter to solve the Amazing Farmer Mystery. The goal will be to use seven clues provided throughout the lesson in order to figure out how so few farmers can produce enough food and fiber for the nation.
Grade(s): 3-5, 6-8
Concepts: Productive Resources,Technological Changes,Human Capital,Investment

top ^